For many of us, Victoria Day weekend means stoking up the barbecue. The smell of barbecued hotdogs or burgers goes hand-in-hand with a long weekend barbecue with family and friends, but with that comes the responsibility of operating the barbecue safely.
Most people equate barbecues with smoky goodness but they do emit carbon monoxide, a poisonous gas that can lead to unconsciousness and even death. Before you kick off the barbecue season, it’s a good idea to do some safety checks.
First off, never store fuel, propane or a barbecue inside a residence and keep it away from wooden fences. At the beginning of the barbecue season clean your barbecue. Use a pipe cleaner at the burner ports to ensure ports aren’t clogged with spider webs or dirt and check the hose leading from the tank or natural gas connection to ensure there are no leaks.
Here are some steps to follow before firing up your barbecue:
- Open the lid
- Turn on the gas release valve on the tank
- Turn on the grill controls or heat settings
- Step back
- Push the igniter button or insert a barbecue igniter or long match
- If the barbecue doesn’t start right away, turn the gas off and wait five minutes, keeping the lid open before repeating
Never leave your barbecue unattended while you are grilling. If a grease fire breaks out, don’t be tempted to throw water on the barbecue as it will spread the flame.
Be safe, enjoy your long weekend and enjoy those juicy barbecued goodies!
Visit Mississauga Fire and Emergency Services for more information on barbecuing safety.