According to the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association), 3 out of 5 (or 60%) of homes has a gas grill. Each year an average of 8,900 home fires are caused by grilling, and almost half of all injuries involving grills are due to thermal or heat burns.  While nearly half of the people who grill do it year-round, July is the peak month for grill fires followed by May, June and August.

Failure to clean the grill is the leading factor contributing to fires in 1/5 of all grill structure fires. Flammable items being too close to the grill accounted for 17% of grill fire causes. Leaks or breaks in the gas line attributed to 11% of fires. Gas grills contribute to a higher number of home fires than charcoal grills.

How to turn on the grill safely:

  • Open the lid before turning on the grill
  • Turn on the propane tank
  • Turn on the knobs of the grill burner
  • Push the ignition button (if you have one)

If the grill doesn’t ignite initially, let the gas dissipate for at least 5 minutes before igniting the grill again to prevent a flash.

How to turn off the grill safely to keep excess gas from leaking out:

  • Turn of the propane tank first
  • Then turn off the grill burners

For Charcoal grills, there are some safety steps to take to keep everyone safe:

  • Use only lighter fluid intended for charcoal grills. NEVER use gasoline or any other accelerant to start a charcoal fire.
  • Place the grill a safe distance from lawn games, play areas and foot traffic.
  • Use long-handles grilling tools give plenty of clearance and to prevent thermal burns to the chef.
  • Before leaving the area of the charcoal fire, always douse the fire with water and make sure the area is cool to the touch.
  • Always store the charcoal starter fluid out of reach of children and away from the heat source.

NEVER burn charcoal inside homes, vehicles or tents. Burning charcoal gives off carbon monoxide, which has no odor, and can kill you.

Overall grill safety:

  • Use propane and charcoal grills outdoors only
  • Place the grill well away from your home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Put safely rules for kids in place. Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area.
  • Clean your grill often, removing any grease or fat buildup from the grates and in the trays below.
  • Stay next to your grill at all times while cooking; never leave the area unattended.