The Dangers of Carbon Monoxide when Camping
When you go camping how do you keep warm? We don't have electric hook up and we cook on a gas stove or a fire or a barbecue. But I'm so aware of the risk of fire and the silent, scentless killer that is carbon monoxide that I never bring them inside the tent. We rely on lots of layers, good sleeping bags, and maybe a hot water bottle, recently we have invested in the best heater of all - a puppy!
But two in five campers and caravanners have admitted taking enormous risks with their lives by
bringing outdoor gas appliances inside as a result of the unpredictable British weather.
Millions are ignoring basic gas safety laws by bringing lit barbecues inside tents, because of the rain
and in order to stay warm.
A survey of 1,000 campers and caravanners by CORGI HomePlan revealed a shocking lack of
understanding of the risks involved when using gas cookers, barbecues and heaters - that can all
emit deadly carbon monoxide, even when flames are out, nearly two thirds of people did not know that CO continues to be produced after a flame has been extinguished.
One in five of those surveyed said that when it rains, they will bring a barbeque into
their tent or tent porch. This is despite the recent near-fatal incident over the August Bank Holiday,
which saw a family of five hospitalised in Cornwall after barbecuing in a tent during a downpour.
A further one in five campers keep warm at night by using a smouldering barbecue,
kerosene heater, patio heater, lit barbecue or gas stove.
And while I wouldn't bring any of these things inside I do think I might fall into the group of people who were confused as to what ‘well ventilated’ is. Nearly half believed it to be a tent with an open door. The reality is fumes can blow from lit and extinguished appliances into - rather than out of - confined spaces, allowing carbon monoxide to accumulate to toxic levels. A reason to ensure barbecues are far from the tent! (Luckily my fear of fire means I keep them far away and also douse them completely with water before I leave them)
“By packing a simple CO detector in your luggage and setting it up in your tent, it leaves you free to
enjoy a worry-free break.”Mark Leslie, CEO of CORGI HomePlan
For a checklist of how to keep your family safe on a camping and caravanning holiday, visit: Corgi Home Plan and consider adding a CO detector to your camping essentials.
Thanks to Corgi Home plan for the info - I have not been compensated in any way for this post.