Home Fires: Safety at the Grill

Fires can happen anytime, anywhere, and being prepared is the best protection against injury, damage, or death.  Understanding the risks, and how to mitigate them, is critical for both homeowners and renters.

As the summer season begins, many of us enjoy a delicious, grilled meal.  Every year, though, outdoor grills cause more than 6,000 dangerous fires in our country and approximately 8,000 Americans are injured.  Property damage from these grilling fires results in over $35 million dollars’ worth of damage.

Grill Safety Tips

Fire safety must be at the forefront of the grill master’s mind when cooking.  Some of these tips are obvious, but they are worth repeating – and reminding your guests and family members, as well:

• Don’t leave your BBQ grill unattended.  Someone should be always keeping an eye on it whenever it’s hot.  Kids can burn themselves by touching it, flames can leap out and start fires, and smoke inhalation can cause lung injuries.

• Don’t wear loose-fitting clothing while cooking at your outside grill.  Avoid touching any hot surfaces, even after the grill has been turned off.

• Keep an eye on any open flames or fire pits and use them with extreme caution.  Sparks can easily jump from the fire pit to nearby flammable items, causing a huge fire to ensue.  Make sure you have a large, clear area on all sides of the fire pit, and do not let children get anywhere near the flames.

• Be careful with lighter fluid if used.  Lighter fluid is highly flammable, and if spilled on clothing, furniture, or even the ground can lead the fire to unintended locations.  Clean up any spills with paper towels, wash your hands thoroughly, and then keep the trash far from any heat or fire sources.

• Keep a portable fire extinguisher available and nearby.  Small, disposable fire extinguishers are no larger than a tall can of soda and are excellent and quickly quenching small fires.  Have one in your house, near the kitchen, and another outside anytime you light up the BBQ grill.

• All grills – gas, charcoal, propane, wood – should ONLY be used outdoors and in well-ventilated areas, away from any flammable items.  

Enjoy the summer but remember to be vigilant while cooking outdoors.  

Home Fire Safety Tips

In addition to BBQ fires, many other areas of your house can be the source of a fire.  To protect against a wide variety of fire types, follow these simple guidelines:

• Inspect all your electrical cords throughout the entire home.  If they are damaged, frayed, or cracked, please replace them.

• Extension cords are to be used temporarily, never for long periods of time.

• Don’t overload extension cords or wall outlets.

• Always plug appliances directly into wall outlets.

• Have a professional contractor fix any broken outlets or switches.

• Update any outdated or malfunctioning fuses or circuit boxes.

• Check that you have installed the correct light bulb wattage for all fixtures or lamps.

• Move lamps away from draperies and shades and install proper lampshades as needed.

• Replace the batteries in your fire/smoke detector and test them to ensure proper functioning.

• Keep matches and lighters in a secure location and out of your child’s reach.

• Purchase mini fire extinguishers and show every family member how to use them.

Stay Safe with Florida Peninsula Insurance

Keeping your family and home safe and protected is Florida Peninsula Insurance Company’s top priority. We are one of Florida's largest homeowners insurance companies offering multi-peril policies covering homes, condos, and renters insurance. If you would like to become a Florida Peninsula policyholder, you can get a quote or call 877-229-2244 (option 1) today!

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