What to avoid at your summer cookout

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This holiday weekend, some of the four-state’s favorite foods will be on the grill, including hot dogs, cheeseburgers, and grilled vegetables.

If you do have a summer cookout, make sure to take some safety precautions.

Captain Stakem of Silver Spring Fire Department has been called to grill fires, house fires, and burn victims from cookout incidents.

“Grill tools are typically longer, you want to make sure you’re using the proper tools,” Captain Patrick Stakem, Silver Spring Fire Department.  “If you’re using just a spatula from the house you’re going to be reaching over the top of the grill area, so if there is a flare, your arm is exposed.”

Officials also said it’s important to keep your grill clean for more than just good appearances.

“Grease build-up [is the] number one cause of fires,” said Captain Stakem.  “If you have a flare up, one thing you do not want to do is pour water on it, because water and grease do not mix.”

So, keep a fire extinguisher nearby and children far away.

“[The kids] may want to help, [but they can do] other things, like go get the potato salad for mom or dad, and keep the grilling to the adults,” said Captain Stakem.

If it rains this weekend, do not bring the grill into the garage.

“It’s not advisable to grill inside of a structure,” said Captain Stakem.

And, just to be safe, keep the grill away from the house–period–and off wood decks.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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