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A Safe Grilling Season
Each year thousands of people pull out their grills from storage in celebration of warmer temperatures. Grilling season also means grilling injuries. It is important to think about safety as you are preparing to use a charcoal or gas grill.
The safety labels on charcoal bags are helpful to review. They explain the risks that are involved in using charcoal. One of the biggest risks is that burning charcoal indoors can kill you. It gives off a gas called carbon monoxide. The gas is very dangerous. You can’t see it, and you can’t smell it. Charcoal should never be burned inside a home, a vehicle, or a tent. It should always be used outside in the open air.
After cooking, do not bring a warm grill into a camper. It takes a long time to burn out completely. Even with the grill lid on, fumes can quickly fill the indoor air. It is best to empty a grill before storing it in a camper.
Before firing up a gas grill, think about safety. Liquid petroleum (LP) gas is flammable. Many accidents occur after the grill has been unused over a period of time or after a grill’s gas container has been refilled and reattached.
It is best to do a safety check each time a gas grill is used. Check the grill’s hoses for cracking, brittleness, holes, and leaks. Also, make sure they are as far away from the hot surface as possible. Keep hoses away from places where grease could drip on them.
Check for leaks whenever you reconnect the grill to the LP gas container or if you smell gas. To check for leaks, open the gas supply valve fully and apply a soapy solution (one part water, one part liquid detergent) with a brush at the connection points. If bubbles appear, there is a leak. Turn off the gas and tighten the connection clockwise. If it is the tank connection, tighten counterclockwise. If a leak is detected, don’t attempt to light the grill until the leak has been stopped. If you are using the grill, turn off the gas.
As is the case with a charcoal grill, a gas grill should never be used indoors. Grills should not be used in a garage, breezeway, carport, porch, or under a surface that will burn.