Football season means tailgating. Who doesn’t love to throw a party from the back of their car or truck while waiting for your team’s game to start? The smell of barbecue in a parking lot before game time is as much a part of college football as the band playing the fight song. To make sure you have the best and safest tailgate party, keep these tips in mind.
- Safely Use Your Gas Grill – Cooking over a gas grill is the best way to serve up burgers and dogs. Be sure to have a safe grilling experience. Check for gas leaks before and while you cook. Keep decorations away from your grill. Keep a spray bottle of water handy to prevent flare-ups. Have a fire extinguisher within a couple of steps of your grill. Never turn on the gas while your grill lid is closed, and never leave your grill unattended.
- Be Careful in the Sun – Being in the sun all afternoon as part of the tailgating experience. However, too much sun can be bad. Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration. Know the signs of heat stroke. Wear sunscreen to avoid sunburns and sun poisoning.
- Have a Designated Driver – Whether you are celebrating a win or mourning a loss, alcohol is part of the fun at a tailgate party and the game. Be sure to make it home safely. Don’t risk harming yourself or others if you have had too much to drink. Some people leave a game without realizing they have had too much to drink. Designating a sober driver before the party starts in the parking lot ensures that no one will get behind the wheel who shouldn’t.
- Hide Valuables – Unfortunately, criminals case parking lots during game time. Do not tempt would be burglars by leaving valuables in open view in your vehicle. Indeed, if you can leave valuables at home, that is the best policy. However, if you leave valuables in your car, hide them in the trunk, under a seat, or in the center console or glove box. Be sure to lock your car and set any alarms when you head into the stadium for the game.
Following graduation from Cumberland School of Law at Samford University, Eric Stevenson held a number of positions including Assistant State Attorney in the First Judicial Circuit of Florida. Eric has been practicing with partner Christopher Klotz since 2015 litigating personal injury and car accidents in Alabama and Florida.