Every year, careless use of barbecue grills is the cause of hundreds of fires. The resulting property damage can be widespread and expensive. Careless grilling costs millions of dollars and, tragically, can also cost people their lives.
"Even a moment of carelessness with a barbecue grill can cause a situation that is costly and dangerous," says Allstate Agent Kevin Gwozdz. "However, understanding the causes of common grilling accidents and taking the appropriate safety precautions can help people avoid dangerous situations during the outdoor cooking season."
The following tips from the Allstate Insurance Company can help grilling enthusiasts enjoy their barbecues safely:
•Be sure your grill is sturdy and stable, especially if it stands on legs. Take special care on a combustible surface.
•Position your grill so that sparks and smoke won't fly toward buildings, furniture or people.
•Prevent burns and protect your clothing with a heavy apron and potholder-type gloves.
•Use only enough charcoal to last for the time it is needed.
•Properly attach your ash catcher when using a kettle grill.
•Douse the coals thoroughly with water after grilling.
•Transport, store and use propane gas cylinders in an upright position only.
•Barbecue in a confined space. If possible, don't grill on balconies or decks of apartments and condominiums.
•Use gasoline, kerosene, alcohol or a cigarette lighter to start a fire.
•Add more starter fluid to an existing fire.
•Leave a grill unattended once the coals are lit.
•Move outdoor barbecues indoors. Smoldering charcoal can build up lethal concentrations of carbon monoxide.
•Discard used briquettes in a cardboard carton or any other combustible container.
For more information on this and other safety topics, contact Kevin Gwozdz with Allstate Insurance at 436-2866.