Summertime fun wouldn’t be complete without some outdoor grilling and backyard barbecues. July is National Grilling Month, which gives us a great opportunity to discuss the importance of taking precautions when grilling outside.
Here’s how to stay safe while grilling this month and all-year round.
July is the peak month for grill fires, followed by the other remaining summer months. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), around 19,700 people visit emergency rooms across the country each year due to injuries involving a grill.
Here are some other important statistics and information that you may not be aware of:
7 out of every 10 adults in the U.S. own a grill or smoker.
Approximately 10,600 home fires originate from a grill each year.
Grill-related structure and outdoor fires result in about $149 million in direct property damage annually.
The leading area of origin for structure fires involving grills is an attached deck, balcony or open porch.
The primary factors contributing to grill fires include: failure to clean the grill, leaks or breaks from a gas-fueled grill, leaving the grill unattended, and positioning the grill too close to something that could catch fire.
The basics of grill safety
The primary concerns with grilling (other than getting the perfect cook on your meat) are the potential for fire hazards and burn injuries.
Follow these basic grill safety tips:
- Never use outdoor cooking equipment indoors. This can cause significant fire and carbon monoxide hazards.
- Place your grill well away from other structures (i.e. your home or deck railing) and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
- Maintain a safe zone around the grill to prevent children and pets from being injured.
- Never leave your grill unattended.
- Check gas grills to ensure all tank hoses and burners are in good, working condition and free of cracks and leaks.
- If you smell gas while cooking, immediately remove yourself and family members from the area and call the fire department. Do not attempt to move the grill.
- If using a charcoal grill, make sure coals are completely cool before disposing of them in a non-combustible container.
Use this Grilling Safety Flyer from the NFPA for these and other grill-related safety tips. Happy grilling!