Barbecue Season Is In Full Swing: Don’t Go Up In Flames
The joys of outdoor cooking also bring fire and associated risks. Here are some safety reminders for gas and propane barbecues to protect you and your property from harm or damage.
• Never operate a barbecue in an enclosed space, close to a structure, or near combustibles. Have a one metre radius around it free of obstructions.
• Keep your barbecue in tip top shape. Check for hose breakage, valve leaks, and other parts before securing the tank well and turning on the gas.
• When in use, never leave the grill unattended, and when finished turn the tank off before the burners so the remaining gas in the lines can burn off. This can help prevent a flash the next time the BBQ is in use.
• Make sure your fire extinguisher is easily accessible and in good working order.
• Propane companies use an additive to create an unpleasant odour like rotten eggs to make a propane leak easier to detect, so you can shut off supply immediately, stop using the grill, and clear the area.
• Although the risk of carbon monoxide is low when using a BBQ outdoors, it is not entirely eliminated. Learn to recognize the signs of CO2 poisoning and take appropriate action.
• Store propane tanks in an upright position, in a spot where they are unlikely to be knocked or bumped to prevent any safety risk.
It may surprise you that space heaters are the appliance responsible for 40% of household fires. This time of year, especially during cold snaps, they are often used to warm a cooler room or area which is not normally heated.
If you have a space heater which is 10 to 20 years old, it is wise to opt for a newer model which comes with more safety devices. Purchase a model that has a tip over switch which automatically turns the unit off if it falls over. Another safety feature to look for is an overheat sensor which will turn the heater off it gets too hot.
Here are other safety tips which can prevent loss of property, or worse personal injury and even death:
Because they can be a serious fire hazard, they should be kept a minimum of three feet/one meter away from any flammable materials.
Don’t use space heaters in garages close to paint or gas cans or in washrooms close to water.
Turn them off when you go to bed, and make sure your smoke detectors are working.