How Can I Prevent BBQ Fires & Burn Injuries? Ask a SERVPRO Pro
In our July installment of “Ask a SERVPRO Pro” we speak with, Donny McKendall, President and Owner of SERVPRO of Worcester & SERVPRO of Shrewsbury/Westborough. Donny offered safety tips to help outdoor chefs prevent fires & burn injuries.
Summer is almost here! That means people are spending more time outdoors entertaining and cooking. Local fire and disaster remediation specialist Donny McKendall of SERVPRO® of Worcester, SERVPRO Of Shrewsbury/Westborough knows that the number of grill fires will increase, peaking in July. “Charcoal and gas grills, barbeques and the like are involved in an average of more than 5,000 structure fires each year and almost 5,000 additional outdoor fires,” said McKendall. Beyond that, McKendall adds, grilling accidents result in 19,700 trips to the hospital annually. Thermal burns account for 9,500 of those visits, and children under the age of five account for an average of 2,000, or 39 percent, of those burns.1 McKendall knows that families can take steps to protect their home from damage and their family from injuries and still enjoy home-grilled, summer meals.
Before you grill: 1
- READY: Clean grill racks and grease trays. For gas grills, check the gas tank hose for leaks at the beginning of the season.
- SET: Choose a safe, firm, level spot for the grill away from coolers, running children and pets, and mingling guests. Grill outside, never in a garage or under the awning on a deck, the eaves of your home, or low-hanging branches.
- GO: Prepare the grill for cooking carefully. For charcoal grills, use a charcoal chimney with newspaper, a charcoal starter fluid, or an electric charcoal starter plugged into an outdoor-rated extension cord. For gas grills, open the lid before turning the grill on. If you smell gas after the grill is lit, do not try to move the grill. Get away from the grill and call the fire department.
While you grill: 2
- SAFE ZONE: Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the hot grill, both while you are cooking and after you serve the food. Grill surfaces can remain hot for an hour or more.
- SAFE TOOLS: Use long-handled grill utensils in good condition; avoid loose, flowing clothing; and wear flame-retardant mitts to adjust vents to help prevent burns.
- SAFE COOKING: Keep the fire under control. Manage flareups by adjusting grill height, using grill controls, or spreading out the coal bed. Keep baking soda within reach to control grease fires. Watch for blowing embers and have a fire extinguisher, a garden hose, or a bucket of sand handy to extinguish spark-triggered fires. Never attempt to move a hot grill.
“Home fires can be devastating, both financially and emotionally, because smoke and water damage often amplify the destruction to both the structure and its contents,” says McKendalll “While our SERVPRO-trained professionals are here to help you recover "Like it never even happened," if you do experience a structure fire, we believe that prevention is better than a cure. Fires and burn injuries caused by grills are not strictly a summer phenomenon. Nearly half of home grillers use their grill year-round, so it’s important to keep these safety guidelines in mind all year long.”
About June’s Featured “ SERVPRO Pro”
Donny McKendall, President
SERVPRO of Worcester & SERVPRO of Shrewsbury/Westborough
Drawing on generations of restoration knowledge and a commitment to excellence Donny has led the SERVPRO of Worcester team to new heights in capacity and capabilities.
A once young, rudimentary restoration service has developed into one of Central Massachusetts most reliable and capable full-service restoration companies.
Holding himself to the same high standards he sets for his team, Donny holds the following IICRC certifications: Applied Microbial Remediation Technician, Applied Structural Drying Technician, Commercial Drying Specialist, Fire and Smoke Restoration Technician, and Water Damage Restoration Technician.
About SERVPRO® of Shrewsbury/Westborough
The highly trained and certified professionals of SERVPRO of Shrewsbury/Westborough are experienced in cleaning and restoring a fire, mold or water-damaged building and its contents, including wall, ceiling and floor surfaces; furniture; fabric; fixtures and more. They also offer cleaning and restoration of special items, such as: HVAC duct systems; building exteriors; electronic equipment, including computers; and documents that have sustained water damage.
Additionally, SERVPRO® Shrewsbury/Westborough is highly trained and experienced in biochemical spill remediation and decontamination. Adhering to proprietary SERVPRO protocols and recognized industry standards (CDC, RIA, IICRC) and using EPA approved cleaning products you can trust the professionals at SERVPRO® to deliver the highest standard of clean.
Founded in 1967, the SERVPRO Franchise System is a national leader and provider of fire and water cleanup and restoration services and mold mitigation and remediation. SERVPRO's professional services network of more than 1,800 individually owned and operated Franchises responds to property damage emergencies ranging from small individual disasters to multi-million dollar large-loss situations. Providing coverage in the United States and Canada, the SERVPRO System has established relationships with major insurance companies and commercial clients, as well as individual homeowners.
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