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The recipe for BBQ grilling safety

Did you know?
Many backyard gatherings are centred around the grill and the family’s resident chef as they create enticing aromas. In spite of how great grilled foods taste, gas and charcoal grills account for thousands of fires on residential properties in Canada each year. Take our recipe for BBQ grilling safety.

“It’s more often the product that’s on the grill that’s caused the fire not anything to do with a defective barbecue,” said Jonathan Gormick with Vancouver Fire & Rescue Service.

To avoid becoming a grilling mishap statistic, we’ve cooked up the following safety precautions:

  • Do not let children and pets play near the grilling area when cooking until the grill is completely cool. Be strict about the 3 metre rule.
  • Place your grill at least one metre away from other objects including your house, trees and outdoor seating.
  • Keep any windows closed near the BBQ, to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Use starter fluid for barbecue grills that use charcoal only. Do not use starter fluid for gas grills.
  • Check the connection between the propane tank and the fuel line to make sure it is not leaking and is working properly before using a gas grill.
  • If you suspect that your gas grill is leaking, turn off the gas and get the unit fixed before lighting.
  • Never use a match to check for leaks.
  • Do not leave the grill unattended especially when BBQ high-fat foods.
  • When you are done barbecuing, shut off the valve on the propane cylinder to allow any gas remaining in the hose line to be burned off. Then turn off the burners.
  • After charcoal or wood ash has cooled for 48 hours, wrap it in aluminum foil before placing it in a non-combustible outdoor trash can.
  • Do not bring your grill into an unventilated or enclosed space such as the garage or inside of your home.
    This is not only a major fire hazard; it is also a carbon monoxide hazard.

Safety first

Not only can grills start fires, but they can also cause burns. Exercise caution as you flip foods on the grill to ensure that your hands and arms do not get burned. Ensure you roll up your shirt sleeves and are not wearing clothing that can easily catch on fire. Put on a full cooking apron to keep you protected from BBQ sauce and sparks!

Summer Road Trip

Burn first aid

If you do get a bit of a scorched hand or arm take these precautions to minimize infection, scarring and a trip to the emergency room:

  • Determine the severity of the burn: call 911 if the burn is severe.
  • Cool the burn area – place it under cool running water for 10 minutes.
  • Do not use ice, gels or creams, as this can cause damage to tissue.
  • Once the burn is cool, cover the burn with kitchen cling film.

With summer just getting into full swing, bbq season will be on sizzle.  Keep your family and your backyard safe while enjoying your outdoor entertaining. Check out our social media posts for great BBQ related topics!

St. John Ambulance First Aid Reference Guide
The Red Cross First Aid App

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