Pasco firefighters urge residents to think about fire safety as BBQ season begins

Pasco firefighters urge residents to think about fire safety as BBQ season begins
Photo courtesy of Pixabay

The Pasco Fire Department is urging residents to think about fire safety as BBQ season begins.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, firefighters respond to an average of 8,600 home fires each year involving grills, hibachis or barbecues.

Leaks or breaks were the leading cause of grill fires, but other factors that lead to the fires were: using the grill too close to something that was flammable, not cleaning the grill and leaving the grill unattended.

Pasco firefighters are hoping you do your part by using these tips:

— Use your grill outside only. Never use a grill on a balcony.

— Periodically clean the grill to remove grease or fat buildup in the trays underneath.

— When your grill is in use, it should be kept in an open space, away from anything that might catch fire, including siding, deck railings, eaves, or tree branches.

— Keep your grill away from play areas or places with high foot traffic.

— Never leave a lit grill unattended.

— Using long-handled cooking utensils will help prevent burns.

— Each year, check your propane cylinder hose for leaks. Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose. Bubbles will reveal escaping propane.

— If you suspect your grill has a leak, through the bubble test or by smell, and there is no flame:

Turn the tank and the grill off.

If the leak stops, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again.

If the leak doesn’t stop, call the fire department.

— If you use a charcoal grill, be sure to store starter fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.

— Never add charcoal starter fluid to coals or kindling that you’ve already ignited.

— Allow charcoals to cool before disposing in a metal container.