VANCOUVER ISLAND, B.C- Barbecue season isn’t all just fun and steaks.

According to a press release from the city of Campbell River, outdoor grilling also comes with an increased risk of home fires and injuries.

Fire chief Thomas Doherty and the city released a set of guidelines for staying safe this summer while enjoying the barbecue season:  

  • Complete a barbecue safety check, cleaning, and maintenance prior to initial use each year. Ensure hoses are clear and in good repair with no cracks. Insects often build nests that can block hoses. Replace worn or rusted fittings, flex hoses or burners.
  • Check cylinder connections for leaks before lighting your barbecue for the first time each season or any time you have replaced the tank. A leak-detection solution of equal parts liquid soap and water is a handy way to make sure all connections are tight.
  • For ventilation and safety, always barbecue in the open at least three metres away from windows and doors. Never barbecue in an enclosed space such as a garage.
  • Keep barbecues clear of wooden surfaces, combustible roof overhangs or trees with low branches. Be extra careful about the area behind the barbeque where hot gases escape and could create a fire hazard.
  • Never store propane cylinders in your home.
  • Don’t allow grease to build up. Clean the burners and grill regularly to minimize the risk of a serious grease fire.
  • When finished cooking, turn the propane valve off first. This allows the gas in the hose to burn off. Turn off burner controls last so that no gas remains trapped in the hose.
  • For a briquette barbecue, be sure to place ashes in a non-combustible (metal) container filled with water prior to disposing.

In the release, the city also reminded residents to check local and provincial fire restrictions before lighting any fire.

For more information on barbecue and recreational fire safety and regulations visit  www.campbellriver.ca/fire.