As the weather warms, few things are more enjoyable than gathering around a fire pit with friends and family. However, fire can be dangerous, causing property damage and injuries. Here are a few helpful tips for fire pit safety. Enjoy the flames while keeping your loved ones safe from harm.
Before Building a Fire
Always verify the fire pit is on level ground, away from combustible materials, such as leaf piles, trees, and outdoor furniture. Never install a fire pit on an enclosed porch or within a covered area. Be aware of wind direction when lighting the fire to avoid an accidental blaze if embers blow to another part of the yard. Place the fire pit at least 10 feet away from any structures, including homes or sheds.
Monitor the Fire at All Times
Have an adult present to keep an eye on the fire, especially when the flames get high. Never leave open flames unattended. Immediately extinguish embers or coals that roll out of the fire. If using a store-bought fire pit, install the screen included to keep embers and sparks contained.
Fire Pit Safety: Supervise Children & Pets
Keep children and pets safe when using a fire pit. Teach kids to stay at least five feet away from the flames. Help them understand a safe distance and instruct them never to place objects in the fire pit. If you have small children, place a screen around the fire pit to keep the flames, firewood, and embers contained and to discourage children from getting too close.
Keep the Flames Small
If your fire grows large, it can quickly become out of control. To prevent this from happening, use small pieces of wood and don’t add logs until the existing ones have burned down. Never add accelerants such as gasoline, lighter fluid, or kerosene, as these can cause an explosive reaction and create dangerously high flames.
Tools for Fire Pit Safety
Before building a fire, make sure you have a fire extinguisher nearby. Keep a poker on hand to manage the logs. It’s a good idea to have a bucket of water to use when extinguishing the fire for the evening.
Following these tips, you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the ambiance of your fire pit without concerns about safety hazards or accidental fires. With simple precautions in mind, you’ll be better prepared to host friends and neighbors to enjoy a warm fire in your backyard.