With summer bringing out inner grill masters, the Okotoks Fire Department wants to make sure residents are being safe with their barbecues.

Whether barbecues are propane, charcoal, or electric, there's a few safety tips to keep in mind.

Ken Thevenot, Okotoks Fire Chief, says the first step is to make sure the grill is clean.

"You may have grease build up on the grill so let some of it burn off, maybe as a last resort use a spray bottle, some of it will burn off. If you happen to put a lid on it and shut the gas off to it, let it burn out, then you can clean it out once it cools off."

Trays from under the grill should also be cleaned of debris.

Wind conditions should be factored in when going to light a barbecue and, depending on the type of barbecue, minimal lighter fluid should be used, or if it's a gas operated grill, the lid should be open when lighting it.

Thevenot says barbecues should be placed a safe distance from surroundings.

"A metre away from the house is pretty standard, and it should be kept away from railings so it has good air movement around it as well."

Barbecues should not be left unattended and a source of water should be kept nearby.

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