Grilling safety

Did I ever tell you about the time I started a fire while attempting to light my sister’s hibachi grill?

I was visiting Dawn and her husband Ara in Arlington, Mass. one summer weekend. They were renting the first floor in a lovely 2-family house.

My sister asked me to start the fire while she prepped some of the grilling ingredients inside. So, like a dummy, I set the hibachi on the outside wooden staircase. I wasn’t much of fire-builder, since I always had trouble lighting matches!

After many tries, I lit the match. However, instead of tossing the lit match in the grill, it landed on the steps. (Did I mention the steps were wooden?) I don’t know what happened next, as I was screaming frantically.

Fortunately, my sister was quick-thinking, and had a bucket of water there in a jiffy. No harm done – except I never, ever tried to light a grill again!

Thank goodness for my George Foreman electric grill!!!

Here are some Grilling Safety Tips:

1. Make sure the grill is at least 10 feet away from other objects — that includes the house, shrubs, trees, etc.
2. Never leave a lit grill unattended.
3. If using a charcoal grill, only use a starter fluid made for that type of grill.
4. If using a gas grill, check the connection between the propane tank and the fuel line to be sure there is no leak.
DO NOT use a match to check for leaks!!!

5. If you find a leak, immediately turn off the gas. Fix the leak before turning on the grill.
6. Don’t ever bring a barbecue grill into your home or garage. You’ll be at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning and fire.
7. Keep children and pets away from the grilling area.
8. Have a bucket of water handy – just in case!

SUPER IMPORTANT: NEVER pour water on a grease fire.If the fire is outside, throw dirt on it. If the fire is inside your kitchen, try to smother the
flames with a pot lid, or use salt, baking soda, or a fire extinguisher.

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  1. David Blasco July 1, 2009 at 2:11 pm

    How do you spell "WHUMPH!"? How do you compare the results you get from the electric grill to the flame-seared etc. etc. results from a gas or charcoal grill?


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