AAMI data reveals the worst BBQ fire-related claims by state
New claims data from Suncorp Group's insurance brand AAMI reveals the worst offenders when it comes to BBQ safety – especially as we enter the warmer months.
National insurance claims data1 from AAMI reveals that BBQ fire claims spike with one in ten (10%) lodged in September – also coinciding with our beloved footy finals.
New South Welshman are the most haphazard behind the tongs, experiencing the highest percentage (30%) of all BBQ fire-related claims, followed by Victoria (27%) and Queensland (16%), according to the data.
“Footy Finals is the perfect time to be firing up the barbie, but you want to keep the serious roasting for the opposing team, not your eyebrows or backyard furniture,” AAMI Home Claims spokesperson Craig White said.
“Premiership hopes aren't the only thing that can go up in smoke. From speaking with our customers, we know that all it takes is a moment for a fat fire, or a slightly leaky LPG cylinder on your BBQ to go unchecked or unnoticed, and you can have a serious situation on your hands,” Mr. White warned.
“With COVID-19 restrictions still in place in VIC and NSW, the footy finals are more likely to be watched over a snag in the backyard than a pint at the pub for many, so you could say the steaks have never been higher.”
AAMI Home Claims spokesperson Craig White
Beyond the threat of physical harm, what a lot of people don’t realise is how quickly even a small fire can cause damage. Smoke can ruin clothes and furniture, and fire spreads quickly – jumping to fences and backyards, ruining other appliances, and requiring a clean-up more intensive than Carlton’s football department overhaul!
Alongside ensuring the appropriate maintenance to your barbeque and surrounds, it’s also important to do your Mum and Dadmin by checking what you’re covered for in the event of a mis-steak.
AAMI data reveals that one in three (32%) BBQ fire claims lodged were insured only for the building, leaving claimants to foot the bill for any furniture, personal items or indeed, the BBQ itself.
A Home Building Insurance policy will generally cover permanent structures and fixtures while a Home Contents Insurance policy will generally cover stuff that is not permanently attached to your property, like furniture, so make sure you have the appropriate cover – then you’ll really be cooking with gas.
By following some simple tips, AAMI Insurance hopes Aussies can enjoy the footy final and the barbecue.
#AAMI’s top tips for BBQ safety
Prior to BBQ-ing
- Check with your local council website to ensure you comply with any fire restrictions that may be in place, such as total fire bans
- Always sit a BBQ on a firm, level base sheltered from wind gusts and flammable materials
- Ensure your BBQ is serviced and maintained correctly, including scheduled pressure testing of any gas cylinders and checking the condition of all hoses and connections
- Avoid leaving the gas on for too long before igniting and NEVER add starter fluid to coals or kindling that has already been ignited
- Never leave cooking or an open flame unattended
- Tea towels, oven mitts, aprons and other flammable items should be kept away from stoves, cooktops and BBQs
- If a gas leak does occur, shut off everything immediately and allow any gas to dissipate
- Ensure that all cooking is being supervised by a responsible adult at all times
- Have a fire extinguisher or fire blanket handy
If a fire breaks out
- Do not put water on a fat fire. Water can rapidly spread the fire and lead to serious injuries and property damage. Turn off the heat source immediately and cover the flames with a metal lid
- If there is an emergency, call Triple Zero (000) as soon as possible.
#Outdoor Fire safety links by state
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services - Outdoor fire safety | Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (qfes.qld.gov.au)
Fire Rescue Victoria - BBQ safety (frv.vic.gov.au)
Fire and Rescue NSW - BBQ and Outdoor heaters - Fire and Rescue NSW
1 Claims data collected from Suncorp Group’s network of brands including AAMI, APIA, GIO, Resilium, Shannons, Suncorp, Vero, Vero Corporate Partners