Even though we have fair weather just about all year round here in LA, grilling season really gets going in the summer. Whether you’re the one manning the barbecue or you’re a guest at someone else’s home or event, it’s essential to avoid accidents that could result in serious burns.
One physician who works at a burn center says that gas grill-related burns are the most common injury that he sees in the summer. Across the country, thousands of people find themselves in emergency rooms every year with burns caused by grills. Some are the result of human error or negligence, while others are caused by defective grills.
The most serious, and sometimes fatal, injuries result from people using too much fuel in order to “get the flames going.” The Consumer Product Safety Commission says that approximately one-third of all injuries involving a gas grill occur while it’s being lit.
If you’re the one in charge of the grill, there are a number of things that you can do to help prevent injury to yourself or others. For example:
- Make sure that it’s in working order before you use it.
- Place the grill away from your house, clutter and flammable objects.
- Use barbecue tools that have long handles and fire-retardant mitts.
- Have a fire extinguisher nearby.
- Light the match with the grill cover open before you turn the gas on.
- Avoid long sleeves and loose-fitting clothes.
- Don’t use kerosene or gasoline to stoke the fire.
Of course, children should always be kept away from the grill as well as from any matches or other potentially dangerous items.
Nothing can ruin a summer like a burn caused by outdoor grilling. Burns can cause serious and long-term damage. Whether you were injured by a defective grill or as the result of someone else’s negligence, it may be worthwhile to determine what your legal options are. The medical and rehabilitative costs associated with serious burns can be significant. You may be able to obtain compensation to help with those.