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AU Tenants and unit owners: A practical guide to barbecuing

Property Here - Thursday, December 26, 2013

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Not everyone has the luxury of a large yard to barbecue in over the summer season, however those with a balcony can still enjoy a good cook up provided they take care around certain risks.

Archers Body Corporate Management’s managing director, Colin Archer, warns that unit occupants should be careful when cooking on balconies to ensure gas cylinders are checked regularly. This should help avoid fire or injury.

LPG and barbecue fires are largely caused by wear and tear on gas hoses and burners, or unsafe use of barbecues, said Archer.

In confined spaces, the risks can often be maximised due to the consequences of fire and explosions in small areas.

“Every year the Fire Service is called out to fires in unit complexes caused by barbeques that are faulty or have been used incorrectly,” he said.

“These fires can cause extensive damage to the property, or worse, injury or fatalities.”

Bodies corporate should check communal barbecues, yet those on balconies are the responsibility of the tenant. They should still comply with by-laws.

LPG cylinders should never be used in confined spaces, and the gas always needs to be turned off after use.

Archer’s tips for barbecuing in the holiday season:

  1. Ensure smoke is not disturbing neighbours or damaging the walls or paint.
  2. Ensure smells are not excessive. Positioning the barbeque in an area where there is adequate air flow will help with this.
  3. Check to ensure the gas bottle and connections are safe, in good condition and checked by a professional regularly.
  4. Ensure noise from visitors is within an acceptable level and ceases at a reasonable hour.
  5. Ensure the balcony is not overcrowded and any rubbish from the BBQ and guests is not thrown over the balcony.
  6. Ensure the balcony and barbeque is cleaned after use and food scraps are disposed of, these can attract pests or rodents.