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Bank Holiday BBQ tips

BBQ (barbeque)It’s time to gorge on sausage, burgers and anything else you can BBQ. After all, what else are Bank Holidays for? Before you get the BBQs out, here are some fire safety tips:

Buy a fire blanket

It can be draped over the BBQ, or wrapped around people whose clothes have caught fire. A fire blanket is something you should always have when cooking, whether it’s in the kitchen or over a BBQ.

Keep a bucket of sand nearby

You can use sand to smother any fires, and if you use splints or matches, drop them into the bucket to ensure they’re disposed of safely.

The right fire extinguishers

If you want to be super safe, get an extinguisher, too. The type you need will depend on what you are cooking with, and what fuel your BBQ uses. You’ll need a class F extinguisher (wet chemical)if you are using cooking oils. If you aren’t using oils, and you are burning ordinary combustibles, such as wood or charcoal, any class A fire extinguisher will be suitable.

Don’t drink

Drink and you’re more likely to make a mistake. You’ll also be slower to responder if something does go wrong.

Keep kids and pets out of the way

They might get in the way, trip you up, knock the BBQ over …anything.

Make sure there’s ventilation

Always keep your BBQ in an open, well-ventilated area (your garden). Don’t light one in any enclosed space (even under a marquee).

Don’t leave the BBQ unattended

You can always take turns acting Chef, so you all get the chance to eat.

Position your BBQ carefully

If you have a disposable BBQ, place it on a paving slab, or on another flat, non-flammable surface. Never place it directly on grass. Other BBQs should be placed on a flat surface, well away from sheds, trees, fences, garden waste or anything else flammable.

Choose the right BBQ

Use the fuel that your BBQ was built for. When purchasing, bear in mind that charcoal is by far the safest fuel to use. This is because virtually no open flame is involved. Also, since it’s an ordinary combustible, fires can be extinguished with water.

If you have a gas BBQ….

Gas BBQs are one of the worst types. If you have one, make sure that you:
  • Store gas cylinders outdoors, out of direct sunlight
  • Change gas cylinders outdoors
  • Turn the gas tap off before changing the cylinder
If you think there’s a leak turn the gas supply off. You can check for gas leaks, brush soapy water onto joints and looking for bubbles.

When packing up…

Make sure your BBQ has cooled down before you try moving it. If you have a disposable BBQ, wait for it to cool then pour cold water on it before throwing it in the bin. With gas BBQs, turn the gas supply off before the barbecue control when you’ve finished cooking. This will help to prevent gas leaks. photo credit: mugley via photopin cc

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