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Firefighters warn apartments about grills


OKLAHOMA CITY — It wouldn’t be summertime without a good old fashion barbecue but propane and charcoal grills can be a fire hazard when used at apartment buildings.

In some cases, those using them are in violation of the fire code.

“We’ve had a number of grill fires where people are cooking on their balconies and most people don’t realize it’s against the law to cook within 10 feet of an occupied structure,” OKC Fire Battalion Chief Tim Adams said.

Adams said people who live in apartments are not allowed to use propane grills.

In the past month, firefighters have visited apartment complexes around the metro to inform property managers about grilling and other potential violations.

Over the next year, officials will visit every apartment in the metro area.

Firefighters want to make sure that they are in compliance with the law.

Fire officials plan to educate renters on the proper use of grills as well as the importance of testing smoke alarms and keeping areas around heating units and hot water tanks clear.

Adams said education can prevent apartment fires.

There will also be follow-up inspections.

Firefighters believe people will comply with the law but if they don’t, they could be cited for a fire code violation