Grill Smart and Stay Safe this 4th of July

Rain or shine, many New Yorkers are planning to grill this weekend. But New York also knows what damage a storm can cause; and with Tropical Storm Arthur on the way, it’s best to be prepared. 

The New York Propane Gas Association (NYPGA) is offering 10 simple safety tips to keep consumers safe during storms and throughout the entire grilling season.

Follow the tips below, and visit the “Propane Safety” section of the Propane Education & Research Council website at Consumers can learn proper grilling procedures along with storm preparation and recovery, in English or Spanish.

Grill Safety:

  1. No Play Zone – Keep kids and pets away from the equipment. To help kids learn about gas grill safety, the Propane Education & Research Council has launched the fun interactive website
  2. Ventilation – Keep the grill in a well-ventilated outdoor area, at least ten feet away from the house—and at least three feet away from trees and shrubs. Always keep the lid open when lighting your grill, and don’t close it until you are sure the grill is lit.
  3. Propane Cylinders – After filling or exchanging a cylinder, take it home immediately. While transporting the cylinder, keep your vehicle ventilated and the valve closed or capped. Do not leave the cylinder in your vehicle.
  4. Firing Up The Grill Safely – Never use matches or lighters to check for leaks. And never use starter fluid with propane grills. If the grill does not ignite within ten seconds, turn off the gas, keep the lid open and wait five minutes before trying again. If the igniter fails to light the grill after two or three tries, turn off the gas and replace the igniter according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  5. General Safety – Never attempt to repair the tank valve or the appliance yourself. See a propane gas dealer or a qualified appliance repair person. Be sure to locate your model number and the manufacturer’s consumer inquiry phone number and write them on the front page of your manual. If you smell gas and you are able to, safely turn off the cylinder vale, turning it to the right (clockwise). Immediately leave the area and call 911 or your local fire department. Before you use the grill again, have a qualified service technician inspect your cylinder.

Storm Safety:

  1. Set Up Detectors – Install propane gas detectors and carbon monoxide (CO) detectors.
  2. Propane Supply – Be sure there is an adequate supply of fuel in the tank and properly secure propane tanks.
  3. Using Generators – Use extreme caution when operating portable generators. Never use a portable generator (gasoline, diesel, or propane) indoors or in an enclosed area such as a basement, garage, shed, or tent. This can result in carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning or death.
  4. Keep Propane Outdoors – Remember that propane tanks should NEVER be stored indoors.
  5. Repairing Damage – If propane equipment has been moved or flooded, be sure to shut off the service valve at the propane tank. Have the system and equipment/appliances checked by your propane supplier or a qualified technician before turning on the gas supply. Do not attempt repairs yourself.

Propane is a safe, clean, versatile and highly efficient fuel that can be used for other outdoor products to help extend the summer season. Propane is not only the barbecuing fuel of choice, it is also environmentally friendly. The Environmental Protection Agency recognizes propane as a clean-burning gas that releases 105 times less carbon monoxide than charcoal.

For more information on the value and safe uses of propane, visit and

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