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CFO and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis Offers 5 Grilling Safety Tips for Fourth of July Holiday

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – In order to reduce fire hazards and protect families on the most popular grilling holiday of the year, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis reminds Floridians to practice proper safety techniques when using grills. Between 2013-2017, fire departments responded to an annual average of 10,200 house fires involving grills causing property damage of approximately $123 million.
CFO and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis said, “As we celebrate the Fourth of July and the birth of our nation, I want to ensure that all Floridians avoid accidents and celebrate safely. July is the peak time for grill fires nationwide, and grill accidents account for an average of 19,000 emergency room visits per year. Using simple steps can reduce this number and prevent grilling-related tragedies.”
5 Tips for Grilling Safety:
1. Check propane tank hoses for leaks — Propane is a very dangerous substance and it can cause serious burns. Before turning on the grill, always check for leaks in the tank hose and connections. Grills that use propane can sometimes have leaks and this can cause explosions/fires if not addressed quickly.
2. Only use grills outdoors —  Propane and charcoal BBQ grills should only be used outdoors.
3. Place grills away from homes, decks, and overhanging branches — Many grill fires can be prevented by simply moving grills away from homes. During the dry summer months, vegetation is much more likely to catch fire, and this can lead to more damage around the household.
4. Keep children and pets away from the grills — Children under the age of five accounted for approximately 2,000 contact-type burns per year and most of these result from grilling accidents. When grilling, pets should be kept on leashes and children should be heavily supervised.
5. Never leave grills unattended — Grills should never be left unsupervised no matter where they are. All it takes is one small accident and a fire can start. Fire extinguishers should be kept near grills to quickly contain a fire.
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