The grilling season is in full swing and with many people staying home this summer, it is important to make sure everyone is safe.

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP, NJ, July 08, 2020 /Neptune100/ — According to the National Fire Protection Association, fires caused by outdoor grills averaged over 8,500 per year in the United States. Not to mention the many people who had to go to the emergency room for burns and other grilling related accidents. To keep you and your family safe while grilling, follow these tips.

1) Put your grill in a safe location
Where you locate your grill is one of the most important ways to keep your family and guests safe. It might be tempting to grill indoors If the weather turns bad, but this can create carbon monoxide, which is invisible and harmful so only grill outdoors! Always place your grill at least 10-15 feet from your house. Never place it under overhangs or near trees, or anything else that could catch on fire and setup your grill on a flat, level surface.

2) Check the major connection points of your grill
Check the major connection points between the gas / propane tank hose and the regulator and cylinder, make sure all connections are tight. Check the gas / propane tank hose for potential leaks. You can do this by applying a light soap and water solution to the hose using a spray bottle. Next, turn the gas / propane tank on. If there is a leak, the gas / propane will release bubbles around the hose. If you have a gas leak, it is time to fix or replace your grill, do not attempt to grill if there is a leak!

3) Clean your grill before you cook
Each time you use your grill, clean it so the next time you grill, it will be ready for the food. But if it has not been cleaned, you will want to make sure you clean away grease and other buildups so that they will not cause any flare-ups and add fuel to potential fires. To clean the grill correctly, use a stainless-steel BBQ grill brush which will easily remove food, grease, and debris from the Grill Grates.

4) Wear the correct grill gear
Long sleeves and grilling gloves will protect your arms and hands from the heat of the grill. Do not wear loose clothing while grilling, it can easily catch on fire. If you have long hair, wear it up and out of the way. Charcoal embers will always seem to find you so be prepared.

5) Use caution when using lighter fluid
In most cases, you do not need to use lighter fluid. Try using wax lighter cubes or other types of fire starter products. Another great product to get the charcoal started is called a chimney starter, this can thoroughly light charcoal coals in under 15 minutes.

6) Use a meat thermometer
The difficultly of grilling a steak or burger is knowing when it is just right. If your grill is running hot, it is easy to burn the outside of your meat without reaching the correct temperature inside your meat. Using a meat thermometer will take the guesswork out of determining if your meats are ready to eat. Simply stick it into the side of the meat to see if your meat has reached the right temperature which should be at approximately 160 degrees.

7) Do not cross contaminate foods
Most grilling involves meat, but you can also grill chicken, fruits, and vegetables. Be careful and prevent cross contamination. Designate certain areas of your grill for raw meats and for everything else. Don’t’ use the same plate, make sure you take the plate back in the house and bring out a clean one for the cooked meat that you are about to serve.

Grilling is a fun way to bring your family together and enjoy the great outdoors. You can protect your family from fire, injury, and even food poisoning with a few simple steps to stay safe.

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