If you're barbequing this weekend, here are some tips on how to keep things safe . . .
1. Give the grill enough space. Having your grill too close to trees or your house can be dangerous with floating embers that could easily spark a fire. Keep it at least 10 feet away from your home, garage, deck railings, and other stuff that could catch on fire.
2. Never leave it unattended. It's too easy for kids or pets to bump into the grill or touch a hot part of it if you're not keeping an eye on it.
3. Keep it clean. You reduce your risk of flare-ups when you keep your grill clean. You should clean it every time you use it, and regularly remove grease and fat buildup from the grates and drip trays.
4. Don't grill too much food at once. It can be tempting to put as much food as you can on the grill at one time, but if too much fat drips onto the flames, it can cause a flare-up. So cook in batches, especially the fatty meats.
5. Use a meat thermometer. Food is only safe after it's been heated to a high enough temperature to kill the bacteria. And the only way to know for SURE is by using a meat thermometer.
6. Shut it down when you're done. As soon as you're done cooking, shut off the burners and the fuel supply for gas grills. Or if you're using charcoal, let the coals cool completely before tossing them in a metal container.