Use These Grilling Tips for Safe Cooking Outside
When the weather warms up, one way to beat the heat is to turn off the oven and cook outside on the barbeque. Unfortunately, this causes the number of grill-related fires to increase. Each year, outdoor grilling causes over 10,000 home fires, but SERVPRO of Vacaville / Dixon / Fairfield / Davis has put together some easy safety tips you can follow to keep your home and family safe this grilling season.
The most common cause of fire involving a barbeque is related to cooking on an uncleaned grill. Grease that accumulates on the grill can cause fires, so just like clearing your dishes from the table and loading them in the dishwasher, cleaning your grill should be a part of your routine when you are done preparing your meal and cleaning up. Another important part of a clean grill involves your coals. Make sure they are completely cooled before cooling the grill and removing them. The safest thing to do with the coals is to put them in a fire safe bucket and allow them to remain there until you are ready to dispose of them. Hot coals can smolder for a very long time. It is always better to be safe and make sure they are completely cold before disposing of them in your trash. Many dumpster fires have been started by not-cooled coals.
The second most dangerous cause of fire from grilling comes from unattended barbeques. Just like inside your home, never leave an open flame unattended outside. Your grill can flare up while you aren’t watching and catch something nearby on fire, and if you are not immediately available to deal with the problem, it can quickly escalate into a much larger problem. Be vigilant and always stay near your barbeque when you are cooking. That means you will have to do quite a bit of prep work in order to have everything you need before you begin grilling so you won’t have to leave your grill unattended, but safety should be your number one concern.
Related to this previous point, always make sure your grill is on a stable surface and cannot easily tip over. Once you load up that barbeque with all those yummy steaks and veggies, you want to make sure it won’t topple on the ground, spilling all your food and the hot coals everywhere. If the unthinkable happens, and you do tip over your barbeque, think before you act. Remember those coals are hot and combustible. Pick them up with something that won’t catch on fire, like a metal shovel and put them in a fire-safe container or metal bucket.
Also, be sure your grill is not near any hanging tree branches or other structures that can easily catch fire. If the area you have designated as your barbeque area is beginning to become overgrown, be sure to trim those trees or bushes before you start grilling.
Although the taste of the grill is temping all year long, if you don’t have a safe area to barbeque during the winter, never barbeque inside any kind of structure, including your garage. Besides the obvious fire hazard that this would pose, barbequing in your garage would also release the deadly Carbon Monoxide gas, so please stick to outside grilling only. No, opening your garage door doesn’t make a difference.
And lastly, if you are using a gas grill, be sure to shut off the gas valve completely when you are done grilling. Make it a habit to turn it off as soon as you take your food off the grill so you won’t forget.
By using these easy-to-follow tips from SERVPRO of Vacaville / Dixon/ Fairfield / Davis, you and your family should be able to enjoy a safe and fun grilling season.