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North Grenville Fire Service clarifies rules for public barbecues

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With the warm weather of spring comes the return of outdoor public events, and if you’re planning a barbecue, Shannon Armitage wants to remind you of our community’s rules.

Armitage, a Fire Prevention Officer with the North Grenville Fire Service, says you need to check the manual for your barbecue before you plan anything.

“If the barbecue’s manufacturer’s instructions say ‘not for commercial use’,” she says, “it may not be used in public.”

If you do have a barbecue you can use, Armitage says you also need to have it inspected every 12 months by a certified gas fitter. 

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There’s also a “mobile food service equipment” you’ll need to fill out and submit to the fire department.

If you’re planning to sell food or drinks, Armitage says you’ll need to apply for a permit from the municipality.

At the actual event, there are more safety regulations you need to keep in mind, according to Armitage.

“Barbecues need to be located at least 10 feet from tents, structures and kept free from public access,” she says. 

A portable fire extinguisher also needs to be accessible and easy to find nearby, and you’ll have to follow the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit’s guidelines, depending on what kind of event you’re using the barbecue for.

You can find details on those guidelines on the Health Unit website, and if you want to apply for a permit to sell food or drinks at an event, or see if your event qualifies for an exemption, more details are on the Municipality of North Grenville’s website.

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