Health experts give BBQ safety tips before Fourth of July

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WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) The Fourth of July is just one week away and many Texomans will soon be taking to the grill to help celebrate with those comfort foods we all know and love.

As part of our new campaign with E.R. Now, we want to share some tips to help you stay safe while also having fun in the sun this summer.

Keep cold foods cold and hot foods hot, those are the cookout rules.

“That cold holding temperature we want to be 41 degrees or below. And we don’t want it to be out in that temperature danger zone between 41 degrees and 135 degrees for more than a couple of hours,” Samantha Blair, with the Wichita County Public Health District said.

Because as health experts say doing so could make you sick.

For red meats such as burgers and steaks, an internal temperature of 155 degrees is the minimum.

“I definitely recommend picking up a thin probed thermometer, they’re super duper cheap at the store. You’ll just want to wipe that off in between uses like any other food utensil, you don’t want that to be your source of food contamination,” Blair said.

Dr. Jeremy Sautner at E.R. Now said if you think you have a foodborne illness and start to feel weak and dehydrated, it’s time to see a doctor.

“If you start having abdominal pain and cramping, obviously you don’t need to sit at home and suffer. When you start having more than 4-6 bouts of vomiting and diarrhea, you start having significant water losses, then I probably wouldn’t wait on a Saturday,” Sautner said.

Grill masters also need to be aware of flames flaring up. Keeping the grill 10 feet away from any structure is recommended.

“When you start getting the blisters thats second degree burns. That’s partial thickness burns where you’re actually burning into the tissue layer underneath the surface layer of the skin. Specifically burns of the hands and face are much more concerning,” Sautner said.

Experts also recommend getting your meats from a reputable food source and wearing minimum spf 30 or higher sunscreen while you’re outside grilling for long periods of time.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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