With temperatures set to peak this weekend, Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service is urging people to take care when using their barbecues.
"Barbecues are a great way to have fun and enjoy the summer sun with friends and family but our firefighters don’t want an invite!"
Head of Risk Reduction , Ian Sloss
If not used safely barbecues can result in flames spreading to sheds, fences and trees - in some cases they can result in people suffering from burns.
Head of Risk Reduction for Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service, Ian Sloss said: "Barbecues are a great way to have fun and enjoy the summer sun with friends and family but our firefighters don’t want an invite!
"The most common problem we come across is barbecues being sited too close to sheds, fences and trees – with them being wood they can very easily catch alight.
"Other issues occur after the barbecues have finished when people dispose of the ashes in their wheelie bins which then melt and set alight. Instead we advise people to wait until the ashes are cool and then empty them onto bare garden soil."
Other barbecues safety tips include:
• Keep a bucket of water, a bucket of sand or a garden hose nearby in case of emergencies.
• Never leave the barbecue unattended.
• Use only enough charcoal to cover the base of the barbecue to a depth of about 5cm (two inches).
• Keep children, garden games and pets well away from the cooking area.
• Never use petrol or paraffin to start or revive your barbecue, use only recognised lighters or starter fuel on cold coals.
• Enjoy yourself but don’t drink too much alcohol if you’re in charge of the barbecue.
• After cooking make sure the barbecue is cool enough before moving it.
For more information about summer fire safety click here.