THE perfect weather for grilling a steak and sizzling a sausage is upon us and firefighters are reminding Fraser Coast residents to be safe when they fire up the barbecue.
The warning comes just two days after two Hervey Bay women received a shock when their barbecue caught alight while they were relaxing in their home.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Hervey Bay station officer Neil Probert said the first thing barbecue owners should do was check their gas cylinders when they were being refilled.
"Ensure that is in test date and that it is not damaged," he said.
Mr Probert said before firing up the coals the gas hose should also be inspected.
"If you can bend the hose and cracks open up then you need to get a new pipe," he said.
The firefighter said gas should not be left on for too long before lighting the barbecue as that could cause a flash or explosion.
Mr Probert urged backyard grillers not to forget their pets.
"Keep your pets away - the dogs love the smell and like to be with their owners," he said.
He said fat spitting from the hotplate could cause serious burns to pets.
Finally, he urged all barbecuers to make sure they left the cooking to a sober adult.