Cooking outdoors is one of the pleasures of summer, and whether you use gas, hardwood or good old-fashioned charcoal, no other method of cooking produces quite the same flavor – or the same sense of enjoyment – as grilling. If you’re getting ready to fire up your grill this season, here are a few safety tips to make sure your experience is as enjoyable as possible:
- Make sure the grill is located well away from your home, shed, garage, fencing and overhanging branches.
- Keep pets and children four or more feet away from the grill, and don’t let your guard down until the grill has completely cooled.
- Never leave your grill unattended even for a moment.
- Keep a fire extinguisher or bucket of sand ready just in case. Remember: never try to put out a grill fire with water. Oils and fats from meats and marinades can spatter, causing the fire to spread and also causing serious burns.
- Clean your grill after each use to avoid a buildup of fats and oily residues that can cause fires.
- Protect your eyes from smoke or flying cinders by wearing sunglasses or other protective eye wear.
- Check your propane tank for leaks: smear a little dish detergent at the end of the hose where it joins the tank. If air bubbles appear, that’s a sign of a gas leak.
- Avoid dangerous flare-ups – NEVER add fuel to a charcoal fire once there’s a flame. If you notice areas where coals are not being heated, gently push them into the hot area using tongs.
- Finally, don’t forget to review your homeowner’s policy and make sure you have plenty of coverage for outdoor entertaining, both for the risk of fire and personal injury risks associated with burns. Inadequate coverage in these areas can result in significant financial losses amounting to thousands of dollars or more.
While you’re at it, take a look at your coverage levels for personal property like ATVs, watercraft and other recreational vehicles. Personal property items like these often have basic coverage under your homeowner’s policy, but it usually falls far short of what you need to protect yourself and your assets. Homeowner’s policies have stringent limits on the amount of coverage they provide for personal property, which means you could be leaving yourself wide open to liability losses.
While you’re checking your personal property coverage, ask about any additional coverage you may need if you have a swimming pool on your property. Swimming accidents like accidental drowning, concussion injuries from slipping on wet surfaces and diving-related injuries – even deaths – occur every year by the thousands, and making sure you’re covered just makes good financial sense.
Ready to review your policy? Give us a call today at (209) 847-3065.