According to ABC News, every year thousands of Americans get injured while barbecuing in their backyard.
This time of gathering with friends and family and enjoying a grilled meal is supposed to be fun, until a simple mistake could endanger someone's life.
Barbecues are very expensive, so we try to clean them as often as we can.
This is also very important to do because it can prevent flare ups, which is caused by grease or fat build up.
So what do most of us use to get rid of this fire hazard? A wire-bristle BBQ brush.
Turns out, this safety device is actually putting your family in danger.
The Hidden Danger
Two years ago, a six-year-old boy was hospitalized after a loose bristle got stuck on his grilled hamburger, and got lodged in his throat.
That story made headlines at the time, raising awareness about the dangers of wire-bristle grill brushes.
According to a 2016 study by University of Missouri School of Medicine, nearly 1,700 injuries from bristle BBQ brushes were reported in U.S. emergency rooms since 2002.
Now it has become a growing health concern.
The reason why this happens is because the metal bristles on the brush become loose after being used several times.
Once it does, a loose bristle can easily get stuck on the grill during cleaning.
Then when you place raw meat on the grill, the thin bristle can stick to your food.
How To Prevent This From Happening To Your Family
There are many things that you can do to guard your food from getting covered in thin bristles.
The first thing you can do is inspect the brush before you use it. If you see loose or worn down bristles, . Don't take a chance!
If you have a new one, it's time to take better care of it. Make sure you don't leave your brush outdoors because it will wear down faster.
After scrubbing the grill, wipe it with a damp cloth to get rid of any loose bristles.
If you're like me and never want to see a wire-bristle BBQ brush ever again, use a wooden scraper to clean your grill.
Here are five other things you need to be concerned about when barbecuing this summer
1. Check For Gas Leaks
Just hearing "gas leak" is enough to make you nervous. The most common way to check for a leak is using soapy water.
Rub this mixture on the hoses and connections, then turn the gas on with the grill lid open.
If the soap forms big bubbles, you've got a problem.
2. Properly Defrosting Meat
Your food can go from delicious to dangerous in a short span of time.
3. Keep Your Grill Away From Your Home
Your barbecue should be placed at least 10 feet away from your house. If there's a potential fire, you could save your home, garage, or porch for getting destroyed.
4. Don't Overload Your Grill With Food
The more fatty food you have on the grill, the more havoc it could cause.
Fat drips will only fuel the flame, and if you're not careful, it could start a big fire.
5. Plan Ahead
Always be by your grill when it's turned on.
Make sure you have all your food and supplies ready to avoid leaving the grill unattended.
Share this article to raise awareness about the dangers of wire-bristle brushes!
[H/T: ABC / CTV]