As health restrictions continue to ease across the country, Americans are looking forward to summer barbecues and evenings around the fire pit. However, these celebrations bring an increased need for safety. According to the National Fire Protection Association, July is peak time for grill fires, with gas grills being involved in an average of almost 9,000 home fires per year.
In the event of a fire, proper use of fire safety equipment, such as a fire extinguisher, is critical. To keep Americans safe this summer, Kidde is launching a nationwide public safety initiative to raise awareness of the importance of practicing fire safety outdoors and ultimately help reduce the number of injuries caused by grill fires.
Kidde is a part of Carrier Global Corporation, the foremost global provider of healthy, safe, and sustainable building, and cold chain solutions.
Kidde is providing life-saving tips to help homeowners safely celebrate the summer season According to a new survey commissioned by Kidde and conducted online by The Harris Poll, among 2,032 U.S. adults aged 18 and older, more than half of Americans (58%) do not know or aren't sure if they know how to use the PASS (Pull the pin, Aim, Spray, Sweep) system for discharging a fire extinguisher.
The survey also found that while most grill owners (90%) own a fire extinguisher, only 59% keep one within reach while grilling. In addition, almost half of grill owners (44%) do not know that disposable fire extinguishers need to be replaced every 12 years. As a committed advocate of fire and carbon monoxide (CO) safety education, Kidde is providing life-saving tips to help homeowners safely celebrate the summer season.
"At Kidde, we understand that practicing fire safety goes beyond just understanding the risks of fire and CO poisoning when grilling outside or maintaining a fire pit," said Sharon Cooksey, Fire Safety Educator for Kidde.
"Most importantly, people need to understand how to properly use equipment to protect your home and loved ones. As many Americans prepare to entertain outdoors - some for the first time in more than a year - we are proud to share important tips to help them safely celebrate summer."
Tips For Fire Safety
Kidde shares the following advice to help protect residents from the dangers of smoke, fire, and CO while entertaining outdoors.
- Fire Extinguisher Safety: Grill owners should always keep a multipurpose fire extinguisher within easy reach (but don't place it directly against your grill). When using a fire extinguisher, remember the PASS method: Pull the tab, Aim low towards the base of the fire, Squeeze the handle, Sweep side-to-side.
- Fire Extinguisher Maintenance: Always ensure the fire extinguisher gauge is in the green zone and that it has been replaced within the last 10-12 years.
- Grill Safety: Households should always place grills at least 10 feet from their home. Not only will this help protect the home's exterior materials, which could catch fire or melt, but it will also help prevent CO from entering their living spaces. Additionally, always make sure young children and pets stay away from a hot grill. To do this, keep a 3-foot ring of safety around the grill while you're cooking.
- Carbon Monoxide Safety: Only grill outdoors - never in your garage (even with the door open). Not only can grilling in your garage create fire risks, but a gas grill can produce carbon monoxide (CO), which can move through the drywall. Additionally, don't grill next to an open window, vents, or ducts, since CO could find its way into your home through those avenues.
- Alarm Maintenance: Working smoke alarms can cut the chances of a home fire death in half. Smoke alarms must be replaced after 10 years; CO alarms should be replaced every 7-10 years, depending on the model. In addition to testing alarms once each week, check the manufacturing date on your smoke and CO alarms to make sure they are under 10 years of age. If they are older than that, it is time to replace them.
- Alarm Placement: Smoke alarms should be installed on every level of the home, including the basement, as well as inside and outside of each sleeping area.