Dix Hills FD Offers Barbeque Safety Tips As we Approach Memorial Day Weekend
With the warm weather approaching and the summer season on the horizon, outdoor grilling will soon be in full swing. Whether for a family meal or a Memorial Day celebration, residents should be aware of the dangers associated with barbeque grill use. The Dix Hills Fire Department wants you to have an enjoyable summer and is offering these important safety tips to help the community avoid barbeque related fires and injuries.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), 16,600 individuals were admitted into an emergency room in 2011 due to accidents while using a barbeque. It is also important to note that five out of every six grill-related fires stemmed from the use of a gas barbeque.
Whether your choice for grilling involves using propane, charcoal or wood, the Dix Hills Fire Department reminds you to always avoid wearing loose clothing that might catch fire on a barbecue grill and to use long handled barbecue tools and flame resistant mitts. Don’t allow children to be unsupervised around a lit grill and keep your grill at least 10 feet away from the house or other structure and never, under any circumstances, use any type of grill indoors or in a garage, breezeway, carport, porch, balcony, tent or under a surface that can catch fire.
Gas Grill Safety Tips
- When using the grill for the first time check the hoses to make sure they are not cracked or broken, test for leaks using soapy water
- Do not bring propane cylinders indoors or into an enclosed space such as a garage or basement. Do not store cylinders in a car or RV. Store them outdoors, away from sources of ignition.
- Storing propane on or in a building is a violation of local laws and may result in a heavy fine.
- Always use or store cylinders in an upright, vertical position on a level surface.
- Never allow children to tamper or play with a propane grill or gas cylinder.
- Make sure the grill burner controls are turned off. Keep the cylinder valve closed when not in use.
- Make sure the gas grill is shut off and cooled before covering your grill.
- When storing for the winter, cover disconnected hose-end fittings and burner air intakes with small plastic bags, or obtain protective fitting caps from your propane supplier to keep out dirt, insects and moisture.
- Keep tanks on a hard surface, off of the dirt and grass, to allow air to circulate under the tank to prevent rust and pitting.
Charcoal Grill Safety Tips
- When using charcoal briquettes or wood chunks, form a pyramid and douse with approved lighter fluid. Wait until fluid has soaked in before lighting.
- Cap lighter fluid immediately and place a safe distance from grill.
- Never add lighter fluid to coals that are already hot or warm.
- Never use gasoline, kerosene, or other highly volatile fluids as a starter as they can explode.
- As an alternative to lighter fluid, consider using an electric, solid, metal chimney or other starter specifically made for lighting charcoal briquettes or wood chunks.
- Never use an electric starter in the rain and/or when standing on wet ground.
- When using instant light briquette, do not use lighter fluid, electric, solid, or metal chimney-style starters. Do not add more instant light briquettes once the fire has been lit. Add only regular charcoal briquettes if more are needed.
- Allow coals to burn out completely and let ashes cool at least 48 hours before disposing.
- If you must dispose of ashes before completely cooled, place them in heavy duty foil and soak with water completely before disposing in a non-combustible container.
For additional barbeque tips, please visit http://www.dixhillsfd.org/bbqsafety.php.
In the event of a fire or medical emergency, dial 911. For non-emergencies and fire department inquiries, call 631-499-8836.
About Dix Hills FD
It is our mission to provide the citizens of Dix Hills, and all those who pass through it, the best service and protection available. The department’s approximately 175 volunteer members accomplish these goals through dedicated response and constant training. Our membership consists of approx. 90 Firefighters, 75 basic and advanced EMT’s, and a dozen Fire Police. We operate out of 3 fire stations, and respond to more than 800 fire and 1,600 medical emergencies each year.