Fire Officials Offer Grilling Safety Tips

This Fourth of July, there are a lot of precautions to take -- from fireworks to grilling. Did you know tossing out embers from the grill is one of the most common ways fires are started accidentally?

Several thousand structure and outdoor fires are started accidentally each year as the result of a barbeque gone badly. Tim Szymanski with Las Vegas Fire and Rescue says to start with, don't leave your grill unattended.

Get more grilling safety tips

"You shouldn't walk away from it. So if something happens, you're there to take care of it immediately," he said.

One of the most common mistakes occurs with charcoal -- when the ashes are discarded too soon. Briquettes can retain heat longer than you may realize.

"You're going to have to let is set for at least a couple of days. If you want to dispose of them immediately, you have to fill it with water and let is soak for at least an hour," said Szymanski.

Other safety tips include: designate a no play zone to keep children away from the grill, keep the grill clear of the house and shrubs, only use starter fluid that's intended for the grill, check propane connections for leaks and only grill outdoors to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.

If you live in an apartment, there are some rules to be aware of there.

"You can't have like a balcony above you. That's against regulations too -- fire codes. And also, you can't take propane above the first floor. We don't want propane bottles inside apartment buildings," said Szymanski.

It's recommended you keep the grill at least three feet from your home.


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