The warm weather comes early in the South and when it does, many people enjoy cooking on an outdoor grill. Whether it’s a gas or charcoal grill, the food tastes better when it’s cooked outside, but with that great taste comes a greater risk of injury from the grilling. Often times these injuries are due to improper use but they can also be due to a defective product.
According to the National Fire Protection Agency, there were approximately 8300 grill-related fires caused by gas grills, charcoal grills or hibachis in 2005 of which 3,400 involved some type of structure fire.
Of those fires involving a gas grill (81%), the source was either a broken or leaking gas line or the gas grill ignited some other flammable liquid. The charcoal grill fires were usually the result of something being too close to the grill, or part of the structure caught fire first.
The Consumer Products Safety Commission (CSPC) has a list of Grill Safety Tips that you may want to review before you pull that grill out of storage. For gas grills, this includes but is not limited to checking all connectors for breaks or cracks, removing all spider webs, and cleaning any grease out of the burner.
Charcoal grills should be checked for rusty bottoms that may cause the coals to drop to the ground. They also produce carbon monoxide (CO) which is toxic and can build up in confined spaces. The CPCS stresses the importance of not grilling in any type of confined space, even if there appears to be plenty of ventilation.
Several brands of gas grills have been recalled in recent years. So if you do not use your grill frequently and it is several years old, you may want to visit the CPSC’s website for grills that have been recalled due to defective parts. Just type “recalled gas grills” in the search box and several will appear. Then you can check to see if the grill you currently use has any defective parts that should be replaced.
If you or someone you know has been injured by a defective grill, you should call one of our Board Certified Civil Trial Attorneys for a free consultation. We can review the situation for a possible product liability claim.