It’s that time of year when the sun shines and the barbecue gets its annual clean. I’m know I’m not the only Brit to have finished cooking whilst sheltering from a shower under an umbrella …
Safety Tips Whilst Barbecuing
In all seriousness, having a BBQ does have its obvious risks, but knowing what those risks are and how to reduce them is the secret to successful cooking and a fun time for all.
When cooking outdoors, whether hot and fast grilling, or a low and slow barbecue, there are a few things you need to know to make sure nothing goes wrong and how to get the most out of your cooking.
Combining explosive fuels with food, hot metals, alcohol and large groups of people can, of course, be a recipe for disaster if you are not careful; besides there is more to outdoor cooking safety than just the fire.
Fire is the most destructive force in the Universe and you are inviting it into your garden for a little cookout. Can I suggest one of the first things you need to consider is a fire extinguisher?
Next you need to know your fire and know how to control it. Every year barbeques cause thousands of fires, hundreds of injuries, dozens of deaths and also damage to property.
This might seem a silly suggestion, but aside from knowing how to cut off the gas and extinguish a fire, what about making sure you can contact the fire service?
Quite simply, always have one person in charge of the BBQ at all times. It’s a bit like a Fire Marshall and in the worst case scenario you need to know something about treating burns and stocking the relevant medical supplies.
Bacteria eats every kind of food you can think of. It grows at any temperature above freezing and stays alive until that temperature hits around 74˚C. Every second you give it between these two temperatures it is multiplying and causing disease in your food.
Everything needs to be kept cool for as long as possible. Salads, dips, cheeses and breads should stay in the fridge until you’re ready to serve and meats should stay in the fridge until they’re ready to go on the grill. Bacteria multiplies far quicker on very hot days.
Remember to “Suspect Everything, Keep it Covered, Keep it Cool, Get it Hot and Use your Head“. Remember, you are more likely to get food poisoning than you are to get the flu!
I know it’s a man thing, but guys, do remember the instruction book is there for a reason, read it – it could save yours or someone else’s life. Remember a new gas BBQ might not work the same as the one you had last year. Be safe rather than sorry!
Charcoal and Gas Safety
Charcoal BBQ’s are the cause of far more fires than their gas cousins. The number one problem with a charcoal BBQ is lighting the charcoal. Lighter fluid causes all kinds of problems and you should really find a better way to light the coals.
What really burns the hair off your face is adding lighter fluid to hot coals. Consider using one or two of those self-lighting bags on top of the normal coals you use. Use an extended lighter or long matches to save your digits.
The number one cause of gas BBQ fires is an obstruction in the path of the fuel. This largely takes place, behind, underneath or inside your BBQ where you do not look, so please regularly inspect your gas BBQ for problems. At the first sign of problems, turn off your control values, turn off the fuel tank and disconnect everything.
Smoke gets in your hair, clothes, eyes and lungs. While a big part of the cookout experience is the smoke, you need to be careful with it. Smoke from your BBQ contains carbon monoxide and other dangerous substances.
As much as we all love the smell of the smoke from our outdoor cooking it is best to let it get away without breathing it in. So enjoy the smell from a distance.
Location is everything when it comes to placing your BBQ. Every year hundreds of people cause fires to their houses, garages and patios because they didn’t put their BBQ in a safe place.
Guys, the instruction book may actually have the minimum distance around your BBQ that must be kept clear. A few suggestions are to stay away from your wooden fences, flammable materials and flora and fauna.
After reading the above you really shouldn’t have to ask. Barbecuing requires some clear thinking, especially when it’s time to pull it all together! Please, keep a clear head and save over indulging for after the BBQ is out and someone else is dealing with the dishes.
FTS Safety Solutions can offer you two separate fire safety packs designed for home safety, especially when barbecuing:Hopefully this gives you some useful safety tips whilst barbecuing this summer. Yes, everything has risks, but knowing what those risks are and how to reduce them is the secret to success.
The Home and Leisure Fire Safety Pack is an ideal purchase for use in your home, caravan or vehicle comprising of an ABC Powder Domestic Fire Extinguisher and a 1m x 1m Fire Blanket. The Domestic Fire Extinguisher can be used on wood, paper, textile, liquid and electrical equipment fires. The Fire Blanket is for use on cooking oil fires and, of course, BBQ’s.
The Home and Leisure Fire Extinguisher Pack is an ideal purchase for use in your home, caravan or vehicle comprising of an ABC Powder Domestic Fire Extinguisher and an ABF Foam Cooking Fire Extinguisher. The Domestic Fire Extinguisher can be used on wood, paper, textile, liquid and electrical equipment fires. The Cooking Fire Extinguisher is for use primarily on cooking oil fires and BBQ’s.
Until next time …To discuss which option is best for your circumstances give us a call on 0330 660 0264 or click here to send us an email and we’ll be in touch soon.