How to Put Out a Grill Fire
When the weather warms up, it is the perfect time to start the grill and enjoy delicious food with friends and family. However, before grilling season begins, make sure you are prepared to help keep your home and family safe. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), every year there are over 10,000 home fires started by grills. Accidents happen, so it is important to know common ways grill fires start and how to make sure you are prepared in case a fire does starts while you are grilling.
Common Causes of Grill Fires
While barbecues are prone to flame up when grease starts to collect, it is not just your grease tray that you should be keeping an eye on. Outdoor grills are often placed in hazardous locations too close to the house, deck railings, outdoor sheds and under patio awnings. To help ensure a safe grilling experience, place your grill at least 10 feet from the home or other structures. Also make sure there are no obstructions like a patio awning or tree branches above the grill that could catch on fire while you are grilling.
How to Extinguish the Flames Safely
Flare ups on the grill are natural. However, when the flames become too large or spread to adjacent areas, it is important to have a fire extinguisher within reach and know how to use.
- If your grill catches fire, the first thing you should do is attempt to turn the burners off. If you can reach the knobs safely (on a gas grill), this will help stop additional fuel from feeding the fire and creating a larger problem.
- You can also close the lid, as a lack of oxygen will help to ease the fire and slow it down.
- Use a fire extinguisher to extinguish the flames using the P.A.S.S. technique - pull, aim, squeeze, and sweep. Once the fire has been put out, make sure to switch off any burners that were still on.
To help protect your home and family, be prepared and practice grill safety. Check your gas lines to make sure there are no leaks before lighting the grill and keep grease trays and grill plates clean by using a grill brush after each use. For protection in the event of a grill fire, have a fire extinguisher within reach in the event a small fire breaks out.