The balmy months of summer are ideal for enjoying fireworks displays, grilling on the patio, relaxing on well-lit decks and camping. Summer is also the peak season for many types of summer fires. Staying out of harm’s way in the blazing heat of the season requires knowing a few common fire safety tips:
Grill Safety Tips
Grill fires peak during July, with a 17 percent occurrence due to outdoor cooking. Between 2013 and 2017, about 19,000 people visited the emergency room due to injuries sustained from grill use. The misuse of both gas and charcoal grills is responsible for fires and related injuries.
With hamburgers and hotdogs heating up on the grill, it is easy to sustain thermal burns, which make up about half of all emergency room visits that result from grill use. When grill users come into contact with hot objects, burns can also be an unwanted consequence.
When cooking on an outdoor grill, use it as intended—in the outdoors. Position the grill at least three feet away from the deck, siding and eaves. If using a gas grill, always open the grill prior to lighting. Also, do not walk away from a lit grill.
Children, too, can suffer burns from a grill. In fact, kids sustain 2,000 grill-related contact burns each year. Children bump into grills, touch hot grills or fall onto either the grill, its parts or the coals. Preserve young folks’ safety by enforcing a three-foot safe zone around the grill.
After each grill use, clean off the grease that adheres to the grill bars; removing grease residue prevents the grill from catching fire. After using charcoal grills, place all cooled coals from the grill into a metal can with a fitted lid to prevent unanticipated fires.
Fireworks Safety Tips
The dazzling displays of fireworks are breathtaking sights, but they are also responsible for 18,500 fires annually. In 2017, about 12,900 people went to the emergency room as a direct consequence of firework-related injuries. One-third of injuries were sustained by kids under the age of 15.
Sparklers reach intense levels of heat. While glass melts at 900 degrees Fahrenheit, sparklers burn at 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit. The best way to stay safe is to see a public fireworks show rather than use consumer fireworks. Even at fireworks events, a close eye should be kept on children.
Fire Pit Safety Tips
An outdoor fireplace provides an evening of relaxation, but fire pits can spark unwanted flames. Fires in the pits should be kept small to minimize danger; large bonfires are unnecessary and risk the safety of those around the pit. Fire pits should be positioned 10 feet away from home structures.
Check the weather and do not light the fire pit under windy conditions; embers can blow in high winds. Maintain the area surrounding the fire pit; pick up dried leaves and debris to prevent fires from unintentionally spreading. Keep a bucket of water or hose nearby before lighting the pit.
Exterior Lighting Safety Tips
Gatherings on the patio during summer evenings are anticipated events. But accidental fires caused by lighting can dampen the festivities. All outdoor lighting should be specified for outdoor use. Carefully examine the fixtures for frayed wiring, loose connections or other signs of wear. Discard worn lighting to prevent fires.
When hosting an outdoor celebration, it is easy to overlook the circuitry that provides lighting. Be careful to not overload the circuits. This means monitoring the draw of power from outdoor lights, as well as exterior fans, outdoor kitchen equipment and sound systems that fuel the entertainment venue.
Outdoor lighting can dangerously overheat. Prevent fire outbreaks by turning off outdoor light fixtures when they are not in use, including when heading inside for an interim or leaving the home for the night. If the home is equipped with smart outdoor lighting, turn off the lights via a smartphone.
Wildfire Safety Tips
Summer is the perfect season for camping. While settling in the great outdoors is enjoyable, the wildfires that could erupt are hazardous. Most wildfires are caused by human error, which also means that people can take protective measures to prevent the occurrence of wildfires.
When out in recreation parks, call 911 immediately if an unattended fire breaks out. Before turning in for the night or leaving the campgrounds, completely extinguish a burning fire with water. Flammable liquids should be stored carefully to avoid spilling. Cool heating devices prior to refueling.
While at the campsite, do not discard cigarettes or matches on park grounds. If smoking on campgrounds, completely put out cigarettes before discarding them. Keep small fires under control by having water, a shovel and fire retardant close at hand.
Fire Damage Restoration
Despite taking fire safety precautions, summer fires can unexpectedly erupt. ServiceMaster Restoration and Cleaning is prepared to return any fire-damaged property to its pre-disaster condition. Our fire and smoke damage restoration and cleanup service fully restores residential homes and commercial properties affected by flames and smoke.
Our comprehensive restoration services include emergency board up and pre-cleaning, an onsite inspection, smoke and soot removal, air quality control and the drying out of areas saturated with water or extinguishing chemicals. We also provide temporary storage solutions to house belongings during the restoration process.
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Fire damage is a situation that warrants immediate attention. Soot and smoke damage can spread rapidly, leaving a wake of destruction far beyond where the fire had originally started. Odors, too, can linger when left unaddressed. ServiceMaster Restoration and Cleaning is equipped with the trained manpower and advanced equipment to speedily remedy the devastation in fire damaged properties.
ServiceMaster Restoration and Cleaning is on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Our skilled technicians stand by, prepared to quickly respond to emergencies. Houston homeowners and business owners depend on ServiceMaster Restoration and Cleaning for professional fire and smoke damage restoration and cleanup services.