Labor Day is upon us—a popular holiday that is dedicated to the millions of women and men who keep this country going strong. For many, it also means that it’s time to break out the grill for that big end-of-summer celebration. And because most of us aren’t Grill Masters, this is a good time for a refresh on some basic grilling safety tips to keep everyone safe and the party going.
Inspect wire brushes—Wire grill brushes need to be checked regularly for loose wires and cleanliness. Many hospital visits have been due to individual wires breaking off and being embedded in food, which can cause serious injury to the digestive system. Also, be sure to clean brushes regularly to kill bacteria.
Tend to the grill at all times—Never leave a hot grill unattended. This increases the risk of a fire—if stray embers escape, it could ignite nearby materials. Also consider that children can be seriously injured if they touch or overturn an unattended grill.
Mind the 10-ft rule—Whether you use a gas or charcoal grill, allow for a minimum of 10 feet clearance from your home or any other structure. It’s also smart to remove any overhanging branches or debris that could ignite from a stray ember.
Check meat temperatures—Always check the temperature of your grilled meat to ensure it’s fully cooked. Consuming undercooked meat is a serious hazard that places everyone at risk for a food-borne illness like Salmonella.
Keep a fire extinguisher nearby—If a fire breaks out, you should have a fire extinguisher readily accessible. Don’t assume that water alone is enough to put out a blaze.
Here’s to a festive and safe Labor Day for all! Now, go get your grillin’ on.