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Grilling Safety

Click here to view General Grilling Safety

Propane Grill Safety   Watch Propane Grill Safety

When Grilling Goes Wrong

Each year an average of 8,900 home fires are caused by grilling, and close to half of all injuries involving grills are due to thermal burns. Please see the select facts about the results of grilling safety issues then follow the tips to make your grilling experience safe and happy.

  • July is the peak month for grill fires (17%).
  • In 2014, 16,600 patients went to emergency rooms because of injuries involving grills.
  • A failure to clean the grill was the leading factor contributing to the fire in one–fifth of all grill structure fires (19%). In 17%, something that could catch fire was too close to the grill.
  • Leaks or breaks were the factor in 11% of grill structure fires and 23% of outside and unclassified grill fires.
  • Gas grills contribute to a higher number of home fires overall than their charcoal counterparts.

General Grilling Safety Tips

Grill
  • Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
  • Never burn grills indoors, even with ventilation. Grills quickly produce deadly carbon monoxide that can incapacitate you and your family.
  • The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets away from the grill area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.

Propane Grilling Safety Tips

  • Check the gas tank hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year. Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose. A propane leak will release bubbles. If your grill has a gas leak, by smell or the soapy bubble test, and there is no flame, turn off both the gas tank and the grill. If the leak stops, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again. If the leak does not stop, call the fire department.
  • Always make sure your gas grill lid is open before lighting it.
  • If you smell gas while cooking, immediately get away from the grill and call the fire department. Do not move the grill.
  • If the flame goes out, turn the grill and gas off and wait at least 5 minutes before re-lighting it.
Charcoal Safety

Charcoal Grilling Safety Tips

  • There are several ways to get the charcoal ready to use. Charcoal chimney starters allow you to start the charcoal using newspaper as a fuel.
  • If you use a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the fire.
  • Keep charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.
  • There are also electric charcoal starters, which do not use fire. Be sure to use an extension cord for outdoor use.
  • When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.

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Jonathan Jones,   State Fire Marshal
141 Monticello Trail, Columbia, SC 29203
(803) 896-9800 | Office Hours: 8:30 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. | Monday - Friday except State Holidays