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6/13/2012 - Barbecues brings added fire risk


Cleaning and checking grills regularly is important.

The Insurance Information Institute has released a web video that warns consumers about starting up their grills during the summer.

According to statistics, most fires resulting from barbecues tend to occur early in the summertime, which is usually the first time hibachis and grills have been used after being stored for the winter.

It is for this reason that consumer safety officials recommend giving grills a good cleaning to make sure their grills are safe.

"If you have a grill that hasn't been used all winter, carefully inspect it and clean it," Anne Brown, chairperson of the Consumer Product Safety Commission, told III. "And make sure the gas container is properly attached to the grill."

The grill should also be checked for any signs of leaks, cracking or brittleness. In addition, clean out the tubes that lead to the back of the burner, as these may be clogged with debris.

The National Fire Protection Association indicates that between 2005 and 2009, an annual average of 6,900 home fires occurred due to gas grills, some of them resulting in homeowners insurance claims.

To view the III's grilling safety video, click here.

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