View Full Version : DANGER! Will Robinson!

08-01-2010, 03:52 PM
A cautionary tale:

I helped a young friend build a UDS yesterday, sent the drum and the kid home with detailed instructions on seasoning and cooking up some brats for dinner.

Fast forward to an hour ago:

Got a call from a very groggy young friend. He is in the emergency room, being treated for 1st and 2nd degree burns on arm, chest and neck, sans a significant amount of chest and head hair. He is wrapped up like a mummy, doped up on 3 injections of morphine.

Apparently, earlier this morning, he and a friend were preparing to smoke some ribs. He had 15 briquettes going in his chimney starter. He went inside to work on the ribs. His buddy, not knowing what the hell he was doing, poured some lighter fluid on the coals remaining in the basket from yesterday. Either residual heat, or incompletely extinguished coals helped vaporize the lighter fluid. 5 minutes later, my young friend, unaware of the addition of the fluid, poured the red glowing coals into the basket. The resulting flash back, vector directed by the height and diameter of the drum caused the forementioned injuries.


Rule #1: Unless you are a team of highly trained professionals, only one person works the fire.

Rule #2: See rule #1.

Rule #3: Get rid of the lighter fluid.


08-01-2010, 03:59 PM
If you pour lighter fluid into a drum, then seal it on a warm day, you will get vaporized lighter fluid, it will certainly flash and could have killed the poor kid.

Always, one person handles the fire.

Crazy Harry
08-01-2010, 04:05 PM
ouch! get well soon, and don't let this stop him from smoking

08-01-2010, 04:08 PM
what did his bubddy think the coals in the chimney were for?

08-01-2010, 04:08 PM
Oh my...I hope he recovers well!

08-01-2010, 04:13 PM
what did his bubddy think the coals in the chimney were for?

Problem is whole lot of people just don't think! :hand: After all everyone knows ya can't start charcoal without light fluid:doh:


Old Smoke
08-01-2010, 04:18 PM
Best wishes, and a speedy recovery to your young friend.

Smiter Q
08-01-2010, 04:34 PM
So sorry to read of this, praying he will be OK,
and have no scaring.

Never even thought something like this could happen, as
I do not use fluid. But this will serve as a reminder for me
to warn others that only one person should tend the fire as
LANDARC and STERLING stated about one person being
fire tender.

08-01-2010, 04:38 PM
What happened to the friend? He needs his but kicked, almost killing his friend.

08-01-2010, 07:54 PM
If you pour lighter fluid into a drum, then seal it on a warm day, you will get vaporized lighter fluid, it will certainly flash and could have killed the poor kid.

Always, one person handles the fire.

I live in the Phoenix area. We are having a plethora of warm days.


08-01-2010, 08:01 PM
Well, morphine does work very well for killing the pain from burns.

Stop by some day and share a beer with me and I will tell you how I know this.

Sterling, very sorry to hear about your friends injuries. Burns are a terribly painful thing to have to endure, and they are very slow to heal.

Please extend best wishes to your young friend from a fellow burn victim.

08-01-2010, 08:35 PM
A story with a painful reminder...

08-01-2010, 09:10 PM
Wow, that's a real shame! Here's hoping for a full and speedy recovery for your friend and hopefully a lesson learned, albeit a lesson learned the hard way.

08-01-2010, 09:41 PM
One more reason charcoal lighter fluid should be banned altogether. Here's hoping for a full recovery by your friend.

08-04-2010, 08:08 AM
OOps- wrong thread!

08-04-2010, 08:51 AM
I hope he still wants to get into BBQ. An event like that could really make someone never want to cook or eat it again. I hope he recovers fast and completely!

08-04-2010, 09:28 AM
I would like to extend my wishes to your friend... I just had the exact same thing happen to me over the 4th of July... In my opinion Lighter fluid shouldn't even be used to light wet campfire wood. Your friend will probably have some scars and chicks dig scars ;)

08-04-2010, 09:45 AM
Wow people never seem to amaze me and the things they subject their friends too! Hope he is doing well and gives all his lighter fluid to friends who need "warming" gifts! :redface:

08-04-2010, 12:03 PM
I am sorry that they were so needlessly injured, but please do an intervention to keep this pair from trying to deep fry a frozen turkey next!

Big George's BBQ
08-04-2010, 12:16 PM
Wow that is a shame. Burns are big time serious as an infection frequently occurs. When I was in nursing school I spent three days on a burn unit. They put a new meaning to sterile measures. My patient had severe burns. She got 100mg Demerol IV to do her dressing changes. Hope he does OK. Please keep us posted. Prayers sent

08-04-2010, 12:54 PM
Ouch! How's he doing now?

08-04-2010, 01:12 PM
OMGosh, that poor kid! Along with the others, wishin' him a speedy heal-up. :pray:
This is the reason that we don't even keep that stuff around- afraid one of my boys would have an accident....

08-04-2010, 01:35 PM
I know how that feels. I had a very simular experience with lighter fluid back in the beginning of april. Got sent to the ER, then flown to University Medical Center burn unit in Lubbock, Texas. Alot of money and pain later, I will never use lighter fluid again and tell all my friends to never use it. Unfortunately I am new to backyard smoking and knew nothing about a chimney until after the accident.

08-04-2010, 02:00 PM
I hope your friend has a speedy and complete recovery.