6 Ways to Prevent Personal Injury at Your Next Cookout

June 22, 2015

 

Summertime is ideal for pool parties, boat rides, and barbecues. You wait all year to grill the perfect burger and soak up the summer sun. You can't wait to display your grill master belt for all of your friends and family to see, so you plan to host several cookouts throughout the summer.

But did you know cookouts are the beginning of many personal injury claims? Before you delve into your favorite summer pastime, l earn about the dangers you or others may encounter.

Hidden Hazards That Cause Personal Injury

You might think the only threat you face as you grill is an overcooked ribeye steak or dry piece of chicken. However, this isn't the only problem you face when you break out your grill. In fact, people sustain more injuries from discrete dangers than they do from poorly cooked food.

1. Grill brushes.

If you're not careful when you clean your grill, some of the wire bristles can detach from the stem and remain on the grate. The wire can then embed in the meat, and you or another person might ingest it. The wire could lodge itself in the esophagus, lungs, stomach, or intestines, causing excruciating pain and injury.

2. Improper ventilation.

Does rain or other adverse weather prevent you from grilling outside? People sometimes opt to cook indoors during terrible weather. However, when you cook in confined spaces, the grill can't ventilate sufficiently. Smoke levels rise and can cause lung problems, eye and skin irritation, and other injuries.

3. Grease or food buildup.

If you don't clean your grill regularly, grease and food build up on the grate and in collection trays. The scorched remains of barbecues past might seem like great mementos, but they create the perfect environment for spontaneous combustion. If you grill voluntarily ignites, the flames could seriously injure you or your guests.

4. Gasoline or other flammable liquids.

You often feel impatient when charcoal doesn't catch fire quickly, so you may use gasoline or kerosene to speed up the process. However, most other flammable liquids are incredibly hazardous. When you try to light charcoals doused in these liquids, the flames erupt and can give you first or second degree flash burns.

5. Cutlery and utensils.

Take caution as you prepare meat and vegetables for your next cookout. Cooks often sever fingers or cut their hands open if they are distracted as they work with knives and other utensils. Injuries can range from small nicks to dismembered appendages.

6. Gas inhalation.

Gas tanks can leak and expose you to toxic fumes. When you inhale too much poisonous exhaust, you may can experience severe headaches, convulsions, and vomit with blood. You or others become seriously ill and may require hospital care.

7. Burns and cuts.

Burns and cuts are some of the most common injuries sustained at barbecues. Individuals can burn or cut themselves on the outside of the grill or from grilling utensils. You can tend minor burns and cuts at home, but more severe injuries will require medical attention.

Painless Precautions to Take

You want an enjoyable, carefree summer. To keep you and others safe, take the following precautions during your next barbecue.

1. Clean your grill properly.

Clean your grill regularly to prevent injury or fires. If you like to use a grill brush to c lean the grate, you will need to use a sturdy, wet paper towel to wipe down the grate after you use a grill brush. The paper towel will catch any wires left behind.

Want to clean your grill quickly? Follow this checklist to clean your grill in about fifteen minutes.

2. Grill outside.

The easiest way to prevent smoke inhalation and other related injuries is to grill outside. If the weather doesn't allow you to grill and you are desperate for steak, you might want to purchase a grill pan. Grill pans are relatively inexpensive and sit right on top of any stove burner.

3. Be patient.

Don't use additional fluids to light a grill fire. You can seriously harm yourself or others around you if you use other dangerous liquids to start a fire.

4. Pay attention.

As you or others prepare food to grill, pay attention. Don't be distracted by events or other people around you. Keep grilling utensils, knives, and other cooking implements in a safe area so you don't cut yourself or others.

5. Remain near your grill.

When you leave your grill unattended, you greatly increase the risk for injury. Always stay next to your grill until the grill cools down. You can also build a barrier around your grill or place it far enough away from others to prevent injuries. Also keep your grill away from your home, trees, bushes, or tall grass to avoid fires.

6. Check your propane tank.

Before you grill, you should always check the propane tank, tubes, and valve connectors for leaks or damage. Faulty or damaged equipment can cause an explosion if left unnoticed.

Protect your visitors from unintended personal injury. Implement these tips before you invite friends over for your next summer cookout.

 

 

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