The following safety tips are designed to guide you through the grilling process. Remember, anytime you work with fire, there’s a chance of getting burned. So, take precautions. Common sense and planning will prevent injuries.

General Grilling Safety

With more Americans lighting their grills than ever before, it’s important to remember that a fun barbecue is a safe barbecue.

Read the owner’s manual.
Always read the owner’s manual before using your grill and follow specific usage, assembly, and safety procedures. Contact the grill manufacturer if you have specific questions. (Be sure to locate your model number and the manufacturer’s consumer inquiry phone number and write them on the front page of your manual.)

Grills are for outside, only.
Barbecue grills are designed for outdoors use, only. Never barbecue in your trailer, tent, house, garage, or any enclosed area because carbon monoxide may accumulate and kill you.

Use in well-ventilated area.
Set up your grill in an open area that is away from buildings, overhead combustible surfaces, dry leaves, or brush. Be sure to avoid high traffic areas and always barbecue in a well-ventilated area. Be aware of wind-blown sparks.

Keep grill stable.
When using a barbecue grill, be sure that all parts of the unit are firmly in place and that the grill is stable (can’t be tipped over).

Follow electric codes.
If electrically-operated accessories are used (rotisseries, etc.), be sure they are properly grounded in accordance with local codes. Electrical cords should be placed away from walkways or anywhere people can trip over them.

Use long-handled utensils.
Use barbecue utensils and lighters with long handles (forks, tongs, utility lighters, etc.) to avoid burns and splatters.

Wear safe clothing.
Wear clothing that does not have hanging shirt tails, frills, or apron strings that can catch fire, and use flame retardant mitts when adjusting hot vents.

Keep fire under control.
To put out flare-ups, either raise the grid that the food is on, spread the coals out evenly, or adjust the controls to lower the temperature. If you must douse the flame with a light spritzer of water, first remove the food from the grill.

Be ready to extinguish flames.
Use baking soda to control a grease fire and have a fire extinguisher handy. A bucket of sand or a garden hose should be near if you don’t have a commercial extinguisher.

Consider placing a grill pad or splatter mat beneath your grill.
These naturally heat resistant pads are usually made of lightweight composite cement or plastic and will protect your deck or patio from any grease that misses the drip pan.

Never leave a grill unattended once lit.

Stay away from hot grill.
Don’t allow anyone to conduct activity near the grill when in use or immediately following its use. The grill body remains hot up to an hour after being used.

Don’t move a hot grill.
Never attempt to move a hot grill. It’s easy to stumble or drop it and serious burns could result.



Each year, millions of people enjoy the warmth, comfort and ambiance of their hearth products during the heating season. Caution should be taken, however, when operating fireplaces and stoves, for the glass panels and other surfaces can become extremely hot due to the high efficiency of the products.

The temperature of a glass panel in particular can increase within a few minutes of ignition of the appliance and can remain hot long after the product is turned off. Touching the fireplace or stove glass can lead to significant burn injuries.

Fireplace and Stove Glass Safety Tips

To minimize the chance of burn injuries, the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA) recommends the following steps for safe and enjoyable operation of a hearth product:

  • After turning off your gas fireplace or stove, wait for the appliance and glass panel to cool down before allowing anyone to get near it. The glass may remain warm from a lit pilot light. Metal surfaces, such as door frames and grilles, may also get very hot.
  • Make sure all visitors are aware of the hot temperature of the glass panel of a fireplace or stove.
  • Never leave young children alone near an operating fireplace or stove.
  • Discuss fireplace and stove safety with children, and make sure they know they should never touch the glass panel of a fireplace or stove.
  • A physical barrier is recommended if there are children in the house. To restrict access to a fireplace or stove, install an adjustable safety gate to keep young children out of the room and away from the hot surface.
  • Install a switch lock to prevent children from turning on the gas fireplace.
  • Keep the gas fireplace remote control out of the reach of children.

Always read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the safe use and maintenance of your hearth appliance.


Preventive Maintenance

Woodburning and gas fireplaces are designed to safely provide years of comfort, warmth and relaxation. To ensure they can do their job, fireplaces require maintenance and proper operation. Before lighting the first fire of the season, there are a few important fireplace safety tips to remember.

  • Have the chimney inspected annually, and cleaned as necessary, by a professional chimney
    seep to ensure it’s clear of obstructions and creosote.
  • Have a cap installed at the top of the chimney to avoid the possibility that debris or animals can
    block the chimney.
  • Install both a smoke and carbon monoxide detector. (Make sure the batteries work.)
  • Keep a fire extinguisher on hand.
  • Make sure the area around the fireplace is clear of furniture, books, newspapers and other potentially flammable materials. (Two feet away is a good rule.)Lighting Fire
  • Clean out ashes from previous fires. Open the damper.
  • Use a fireplace grate.
  • Keep glass doors open during the flame.
  • Use fireplace tools to tend the fire.
  • Build a safe fire.
  • Always close the firescreen when in use.Using Common Sense
  • Never burn garbage, rolled newspapers, charcoal or plastic in the fireplace.
  • Never use gasoline or any liquid accelerant to help start a fire.
  • Keep small children and pets away from the fireplace.
  • Never leave a fire unattended.
  • Don’t close the damper until the embers have completely stopped burning.
  • Make sure the fire is completely out before going to bed or leaving the house.
  • When cleaning the fireplace, store ashes in a non-combustible container with a tightly fitting lid and place the container away from the house.
  • Never burn a Christmas tree in the fireplace.

Starting a Safe Fire
Creating a perfect fire starts with using seasoned firewood cut to the correct length. To start a safe fire, crumple paper on the grate within the fireplace and cover it with kindling or a manufactured firestarter. Open the fireplace damper fully and light the paper. Use a long nozzle utility lighter such as a Scripto® Aim ‘n Flame II®. Once the kindling or the firestarter is burning brightly, add dry seasoned wood to the fire and shut the firescreen. It’s important to avoid overloading the fireplace so the firewood doesn’t tumble out. A couple of logs will suffice. Burning a manufactured firelog purchased from the grocery or hardware store is a good alternative to firewood, and does not require paper to get the fire started.

Source: Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association



There’s a special beauty and tranquility to candles, but a lighted candle is also an open flame, and a potential fire hazard if not carefully monitored. In fact, accidental candle fires account for approximately four percent of all U.S. residential fires.

A study by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission suggests that 85 percent of candle fires could be avoided if consumers followed three basic safety rules:

Never leave a burning candle unattended.

Never burn a candle on or near anything that might catch fire.

Keep candles out of the reach of children and pets.

Calico Brands, Inc. urges consumers to always follow the basic rules of fire safety when burning candles.



Calico Brands, Inc. and The National Candle Association urge consumers to follow these rules for candle safety.

  • Always keep a burning candle within sight.
    Extinguish all candles when leaving a room or before going to sleep.
  • Never burn a candle on or near anything that can catch fire.
    Place candles away from drapes, bedding, carpets, books, paper, flammable decorations, etc.
  • Keep candles out of the reach of children and pets.
    Don’t place lighted candles where they might be knocked over by children or pets.
  • Trim candlewicks to 1/4 inch each time before burning.
    Long or crooked wicks cause uneven burning and dripping.
  • Always use a candleholder specifically designed for candle use.
    The holder should be heat resistant, sturdy and large enough to contain drips or melted wax.
  • Be sure candleholder is placed on a stable, heat-resistant surface.
    This will also help prevent possible heat damage to underlying surface and prevent glass containers from cracking or breaking.
  • Keep the wax pool free of wick trimmings, matches and debris at all times.
    Always read and follow manufacturer’s use and safety instructions carefully. Don’t burn candle longer than the manufacturer recommends.
  • Keep burning candles away from drafts, vents, ceiling fans and air currents.
    This will help prevent rapid, uneven burning, and avoid flame flare-ups and sooting. Drafts can also blow lightweight curtains or papers into the flame where they could catch fire.
  • Always burn candles in a well-ventilated room.
    Don’t burn too many candles in a small room or in a “tight” home where air exchange is limited.
  • Don’t burn a candle all the way down.
    Extinguish the flame if it comes too close to the holder or container. For a margin of safety, discontinue burning a candle when 2 inches of wax remains 1/2 inch if in a container.
  • Never touch or move a burning candle when the wax is liquid.
  • Never use a knife or sharp object to remove wax drippings from a glass holder.
    It might scratch, weaken, or cause the glass to break upon subsequent use.
  • Place burning candles at least three inches apart.
    This ensures they won’t melt one another, or create drafts that can cause the candles to flare.
  • Use a snuffer to extinguish a candle.
    It’s the safest way to prevent hot wax splatters.
  • Never extinguish candles with water.
    The water can cause the hot wax to splatter and might cause a glass container to break.
  • Be very careful if using candles during a power outage.
    Flashlights and other battery-powered lights are safer sources of light during a power failure.
  • Make sure a candle is completely extinguished and the wick is no longer glowing before leaving the room.
  • Extinguish a candle if it flickers repeatedly, smokes, or the flame becomes too high.
    The candle isn’t burning properly. Let it cool, trim the wick, check for drafts and then re-light.
  • Never use a candle as a night light.

Source: National Candle Assocation

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