NEW YORK, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Firefighters Association of the State of New York (FASNY) urged New Yorkers to follow some basic suggestions to avoid accidents and injuries while firing up their grills. To many, Memorial Day weekend represents the beginning of summer gatherings and events held outdoors.

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), an average of 19,700 patients per year (2014 – 2018) went to emergency rooms due to injuries involving grills. Nearly half of the injuries were thermal burns, including burns from both fire and contact with hot objects.

Children under age five account for an average of 39% of contact-type burns per year according to the NFPA. These burns typically occurred when someone bumped into, touched, or fell on the grill, grill parts or hot coals. Grills alone were involved in an average of 8,900 home fires per year, including 3,900 structure fires and 4,900 outdoor fires. 

Suggestions from the NFPA and FASNY:

  • Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
  • The grill should be placed well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.
  • Always make sure your gas grill lid is open before lighting it. 

FASNY President John P. Farrell cautions people to keep an eye on their grill, their children, and their surroundings and to never hesitate to call their local fire department in the event of an emergency. For more information regarding grilling and fire safety, visit www.fasny.com.