That isn't burnt, that’s flavor!

That isn't burnt, that’s flavor!
By Amy Haldorson
Last fall we had an insured stop in to make a claim. He looked a little different from the last time we saw him and I couldn't put my finger on it. Then I realized, he was missing eyebrows, eyelashes, and arm hair he pointed out. I knew immediately what the claim was going to be….he must have had a grill fire. We have seen a few insurance claims where people have had their grills blow up and cause all sorts of damage. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, about 5,7000 grill fires take place on residential property every year, most caused by malfunctioning gas grills. These fires cause an annual average of $37 million in damage, 100 injuries and 10 fatalities. Thankfully we haven't seen major injuries, but it can easily happen. During windy days or cold days, people like to grill in their garages. Unfortunately this is not ideal as it can cause damage to your property. That is what happened to our insured. He was grilling inside his garage and his grill exploded The entire garage was filled with smoke causing soot damage to the newly painted walls. No possessions caught fire, but a gust of wind could of changed that. In the instance of a grill fire, spreading to your property, your homeowners insurance provides financial protection, as fire is a covered peril. A standard policy covers:
· Damage to the house itself
· Damage to personal possessions, such as lawn furniture
· Damage to insured structures on your property, such as a shed
· Injuries to a guest, under the liability portion of the policy
There are some ways to prevent accidents from happening. Gas grills are generally safe if they are properly maintained and checked for leaks. Here are some safety tips when setting up for the grilling season:
· Check grill hoses for cracks or holes
· Check for blockages
· Adjust hoses away from hot area or where grease might drip on them
· Cover your grill when cooled
· Store propane tanks outside, away from your house
As for our insured, we helped him to make sure his claim went smoothly and recommended a big bottle of Rogaine!