State Fire Marshal Issues Outdoor Fire Safety Guidelines Ahead of Memorial Day Weekend
HARFORD COUNTY - With Memorial Day weekend beckoning, Maryland families are preparing for the outdoors, prompting State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci to issue safety guidelines. Outdoor activities, while enjoyable, often increase fire risks, and Marshal Geraci's tips aim to help citizens prevent potential mishaps during the holiday weekend and the ensuing summer season.
In terms of outdoor cooking, safety tips for Gas Grills include:
- Always transport Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) cylinders upright, with windows open, and never in the trunk of a car.
- Ensure all connections are tight, checking them with soapy water. The appearance of bubbles suggests leaks.
- Prevent grease from dripping onto the hose or gas cylinder.
- Store the cylinder outdoors in a shaded, cool area out of direct sunlight.
- Read and follow the manufacturer's instructions for gas grill use.
For Charcoal Grills, Marshal Geraci advises:
- Use only a small amount of charcoal starter fuel.
- Do not add starter fuel once a fire has started.
- Dispose of ashes carefully, as they may contain live coals. Wetting the ashes with water before emptying the barbecue is the safest method.
- Never use outdoor cooking equipment indoors.
As public fireworks displays are a common sight in warmer weather, Marshal Geraci also provided tips for safely enjoying these events:
- Plan to attend licensed and inspected public fireworks displays held across Maryland.
- Only use legal fireworks in Maryland, such as snap n' pops, party poppers, black snakes, gold-labeled sparklers, and ground-based sparkling devices.
- If children are involved, ensure they only use legal fireworks under close adult supervision.
- Never mix alcohol and fireworks.
- Fully extinguish remains of fireworks in water before disposal.
Marshal Geraci also reminded us that all fireworks are banned in Baltimore City, Prince George's County, Montgomery County, the town of Ocean City, and Howard and Harford Counties. By adhering to these safety tips, Marylanders can enjoy a safe and enjoyable holiday and summer season.
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