Take the following steps to avoid a flame-up:
- Position your grill at least 2 feet away from wood siding, deck railings, awnings, and low-slung tree branches.
- Make sure grill equipment is in good shape. Propane or natural gas can leak from rusty tanks, cracked hoses, and corroded couplings, sending out a dangerous effluent.
- Use kindling, rather than lighter fluid, to revive a flame.
- Keep an eye on an open grill at all times. Simply closing the cover at the first sign of trouble could suffocate a fire.
- Empty spent ashes into a metal bucket filled with water, and let sit for a day before burying them in the garden.
- Keep an extinguisher handy outside to quickly douse a fire should it get out of hand.