Grill Safety Tips From Fire Department

Reporter: Heather Rosenbaum | Videographer: Jonathan Merryman

Danville, VA -- This holiday weekend many of you are going to be taking advantage of the warm weather and having a cookout. So we have some tips for how to stay safe while grilling.

The fire department was called to Piney Forest Road because of a grilling fire that resulted in someone getting serious burns. Before you turn the ignition on, the Danville Fire Department has some warnings for grilling safely.
"Make sure that your grill is away from your house far enough," said Richie Guill, assistant fire marshal.
Code says grills should be at least 10 feet from buildings. Also remember to not grill on a wooden deck, under a carport or near children. The fire department says Thursday's grilling mishap resulted from charcoal being used in a gas grill.
"He thought the coals had gone out and tried to use the lighter fluid to re ignite it and it was hot enough to where it did a flash fire on him," said Guill.
So always read the directions.
"A person's life could be lost. Severe burns are very nasty injuries, it's a very long lengthy process to recover from a burn," said Guill.
Whenever alcohol comes into play, caution should be on your mind.
"Make sure you have someone maybe that is there that is not drinking. We have a designated driver, maybe have a designated griller," said Guill.
But grilling season has its perks. For Lowe's in Danville, grills fly off the shelves in the summer.
"We have a spike in sales around the holidays, Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and anytime throughout the summer is a big grill weekend for us," said Shannon Moon, store manager at Lowe's.
But they too want you to take precaution.
"It's a great idea to have a fire extinguisher close by," said Moon.
Other grilling tips include:
  • Keep the lighter fluid away from the grill, do not set it down next to the grill when in use.
  • Dispose of charcoal correctly.
  • Keep the grill away from shrubbery.
  • Use a mat under the grill.
Another thing you have to watch out for is firework safety. There are many hazards involved.