Grill Safety Tips: Preventing Accidents

Grill Safety

I can recall some years ago when a close friend of mine called in a frantic rage while driving her son to the hospital. As she struggled to speak, I manage to hear her say that her 3 year old had been charcoal grillseverely burned. Much later, once she had calmed down, I was able to get the whole story.

Her son had gone to visit his father for the weekend and when his father brought him back home, her son had returned with approximately 6 inches of his arm covered in gauze which was being held in place by a sports wrap. The expression on her son’s face left her uneasy about the situation as she could tell he had been crying. When she asked her son’s father what had happened, he stated that her son had fell and scraped his arm. She then removed the wrap and gauze, only to fine a terrible burn. She immediately brought him to the hospital where he was treated and child protection services was called in to intervene on the child’s behalf. Thankfully, she was able to prove that her son was not with her when the injury had occurred and to this day, the only indication of the incident is a scar that will never go away.

I know you are probably wondering where I am going with this so I will tell you. The little boy had been riding his bike around the grill and had taken a fall. His arm had landed on the burning hot grill. Needless to say, the father was held responsible for child neglect. So for those of you who are new to grilling and as a reminder to veteran grillers, please remember to never grill where kids are playing and never leave your grill unattended. This tip alone can help reduce accidents that can have serious consequences.

As the summer quickly approaches and we begin to pull out our grills, it is important  to familiarize ourselves with grilling safety tips. Knowing the possible risk involved can help reduce the amount of accidents.

Charcoal and Gas Grill Safety Tips

Gas grill safety tips

The liquid petroleum used in gas and propane grills is highly flammable and the following tips will help you to avoid accidents associated with cooking with a gas grill.

  • Always perform safety checks before using your grill, especially if it has been sitting up for a while to reduce the risk of fires, etc.
  • Verify that the tubes that lead into the burner are clean and free of bugs, incests, and other debris
  • Gas grills should be used outdoors only. Grills should be at least 10 feet away from your home.
  • Replace damaged connectors to avoid leaks
  • Keep gas hose away from hot surfaces; for additional safety install a heat shield around the hose
  • Always refer to the manufacturer instructions and if you do not understand something, contact the maufacturer’s customer service department
  • Always check for gas leaks; If you do smell gas turn off the gas valve and do not attempt to use the grill until after it has been serviced and repaired by a professional; Never try to fix a leak yourself

Keep all flammable items away from the grill. When transporting small gas grills or any gas grill, make sure to transport containers in a secure, upright position. All grills made after October 1, 1995, most have three additional safety features which are listed below.

A device to control the flow of gas in case of a rupture

A way to control the gas if the connection from the tank to the grill is not leak proof.

A way to quickly shut off the grill

Charcoal Grill Safety

Burning charcoal produces high amounts of carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is an orderless gas that can reach toxic levels when in a enclosed space. When these fumes are overly consumed, serious injury or death can occur. To prevent accidents associated with using a charcoal grill, never burn charcoal in an closed space. Also, never store a charcoal grill in doors, such as in a garage, until you are completely sure that the fire has been extinguished.

Some of the information provided on this page has been gathered from Please visit for additional information on grilling safety.



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