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Burgers on a GrillWe recently shared some safety tips for barbecues. As you prepare to fire up those grills for summer, we wanted to share a few more safety tips specific to charcoal grills.

Tips for Charcoal Grilling


  • Ensure that your charcoal briquette barbecue is well ventilated, as poisonous gases like carbon monoxide are released from the briquettes.
  • Do not use gasoline to prompt your charcoal briquettes to ignite quickly. Instead, use a proper charcoal lighting fluid. Allow the fluid to settle for a few minutes, so that the explosive vapours have a chance to dissipate.
  • Stand back from the grill a safe distance while lighting the briquettes. Make sure you did not spill any lighting fluid onto your clothing or the area around the actual grill. Prior to igniting the briquettes, ensure that the can of fluid has been placed at a safe distance from the barbecue.
  • If the briquettes begin to die out, refrain from spraying the lighting fluid onto the hot coals. This could result in a very dangerous and explosive situation.
  • When you are done grilling, make sure that your hot coals are fully extinguished before you dispose of them. Hot coals are very dangerous and can easily start a garbage can fire.

Enjoy Your Summer Barbecue, But Remember…


  • Keep children and pets far away from a hot grill, and never leave them unsupervised in the area of an ignited barbecue.
  • Never use wood, charcoal briquettes, barbecue starter fluid or gasoline in conjunction with your propane or natural gas barbecue. Doing so is likely to result in a highly flammable and volatile situation that may cause extensive damage to your property, personal injury or loss of life.
  • Barbecue in an open outdoor space due to ventilation and safety reasons. Keep the barbecue at least 3 metres from windows and doors.
  • Keep the barbecue away from wooden fences, wooden walls, combustible overhead roofs, and trees with low branches.
  • Don't allow an accumulation of grease to occur. Keep your grill and burners clean. This will help to minimize the chances that you will have a serious grease fire.
  • Never fight a grease fire with water. This will only cause the flames to flare up. Keep loose clothing away from a hot barbecue. Roll up your sleeves or cook in a short sleeved shirt. If your clothing catches on fire, quickly Stop, Drop and Roll.
  • Use long handled tongs and brushes while grilling that put an extra bit of distance between you and the flames.
  • Wear oven mitts and a heavy apron to protect yourself from fire while grilling.
If you do burn yourself, run the affected area under cool water for five minutes. If your burn is serious (charring, blistering) seek medical attention right away.

A quality home insurance policy can help protect you financially should any grill related accidents occur. Call Heritage Insurance Ltd at (800) 667-7640 for a free Moose Jaw SK home insurance quote today!
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