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From Richmond Fire Department: With grilling season here, help us with a few common-sense safety tips

A note from the Richmond Fire Department and SafeKids with a few recommendations on staying safe during grilling season:

There is no better time to start thinking about cooking outside than when the weather starts to warm up and it stays light outside longer.
While grilling can be a great alternative to cooking inside, did you know that almost 60 percent of all grill-related fires on residential properties occur in the summer?  These fires, that can damage property and cause injury and even death, are often preventable.

Grill Safety Tips

• Grills should only be used outdoors and at least 10 feet away from a house or any building.
• Do not use the grill in a garage, breezeway, carport, porch, or under a surface that can catch fire.
• The grill should be placed well away from deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
• Children and pets should stay away from the grill area.
• Grills should be kept clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grill itself and in the trays below the grill.
• Never leave a grill unattended; use extra care grilling in windy conditions.
• Keep lighted cigarettes, matches, or open flames away from the grill.

Charcoal grills

• If you use a starter fluid, use only charcoal starter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquids to the lit fire.
• Never burn charcoal inside of homes, vehicles, tents, or campers. Charcoal should never be used indoors, even if ventilation is provided.
• When you are finished grilling, let the coals completely cool before disposing in a metal container.
• Since charcoal produces CO fumes until the charcoal is completely extinguished, do not store the grill indoors with freshly used coals.
• Store charcoal fluid out of the reach of children and away from heat sources.

Gas Grill

• Check grill hoses for cracking, brittleness, holes, and leaks.
• Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when operating a gas grill.
• If you detect a leak, immediately turn off the gas and don’t attempt to light the grill until the leak is fixed.

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