Stay safe when barbecue grilling

Tips to remember whing cooking on the flame

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Barbecue grilling may not seem like much of a danger but thousands of people are injured every year.

Summer is a popular time for the outdoor pastime and according to the National Fire Protection Association, July is the peak month for grill fires (18%), including both structure, outdoor or unclassified fires, followed by June (15%), May (13%) and August (12%).

Unfortunately children under five accounted for an average of 2,000 or 39%, of the contact-type burns per year. These burns typically occurred when someone, often a child, bumped into, touched or fell on the grill, grill part or hot coals.

Most of the home fires were due to gas grills followed by charcoal or other solid-fueled grills.

Some suggestions to prevent getting hurt is to be sure to only grill outdoors at least 10 feet from your home. Always open the hood before ignightning to minimize excess propane build up which could explode. Make sure to avoid grilling under a wood overhang which could trap smoke or catch on fire during a grease flare-up.

Always keep a fire extinguisher and spray bottle of water nearby to put out flames if they jump out of control.

Grill maintenance is important. Keep grease traps clean and inspect the propane tank’s expiration date stamped on the collar. It will need to be replaced if it is older than 12 years.

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