We have finally made it to the "unofficial" start to summer as the Memorial Day holiday falls on it's traditional day this year (May 30th) and that's a good thing as the second to last day was celebrated as "Decoration Day" and that is how I'll always look at this very important observance to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

In my eyes, this is a day of reflection but at some point Berkshire residents and our tri-state region neighbors will be firing up the grill as you'll be able to enjoy some of your favorite foods cooked fresh out of "the barbie", but you also need to take the necessary safety precautions while cooking and here are some suggestions, courtesy of The Inter Mountain Health Care web site:

For starters, keep your grill in a safe location at least 10 feet away from your place of dwelling and it should be on a flat level surface. NEVER cook indoors as carbon monoxide emissions could result from that move. Also, keep any articles away from the barbecue including tablecloths and lawn decorations which are two examples of areas that can easily catch fire.

Jesse Grilling #1 cropped
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LOOK! There's OUR "Main Man & Main Dad" Jesse getting a head start on his holiday barbecue. Bring back some leftovers, if you can.

Now back to more safety tips: Make sure your grill is clean to eliminate grease and other excess buildup which can also pose as a health hazard as remnants of last week's leftovers are not as appetizing as you think. Make it a point to check your grill for possible gas or propane leaks as this red flag is an indicator that a replacement should be in the cards for safety reasons.

Getty Images
Getty Images
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It is also suggested you wear a long sleeved shirt and rubber gloves to prevent any injury plus if by chance a fire occurs have a fire extinguisher or can of baking soda available to put out the impending blaze and keep track of the amount of lighter fluid that is used while cooking. If a problem persists, do not hesitate to call 9-1-1.

For safety reasons, NEVER leave the grill unattended while you are cooking up those hamburgers and hot dogs and you don't need to turn on the gas further while the unit is closed as this could lead to further complications. Keep youngsters and four legged friends away from the barbecue while in operation. Plus, don't overload the grill as smaller portions are rule of thumb and your guests will have plenty of opportunity to indulge in your culinary creations.

Group of people standing around grill, chatting, drinking and eating.
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Finally, use a meat thermometer to control the temperature of any food that is cooked and prevent cross contamination of delicacies that don't require much heat . Don't forget to turn the grill OFF when finished once your tasks at hand are completed.

Barbecue Grilled Hot Dog with Yellow Mustard
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BOTTOM LINE: These safety measures will assure a good time will be had by all and don't forget to save a place for me if possible. Buon Appetit!!

.Make sure your four legged friends are NOT indulging in grilled food options. Here are some reasons why:

KEEP READING: Here are 6 foods from your cookout that could harm your dog