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Camping & Glamping Fire Safety
Camping, glamping and caravanning safety

Whether camping or glamping this summer, more people than ever are enjoying their first holiday in the great outdoors. Make sure you enjoy your trip safely by following our simple tips.

You can read all our tips on the page below or download our safety leaflet and keep it with you camping kit, ready to remind you whenever you set off for the wilds 

General safety

Ensure caravans and tents are at least six metres apart, (where possible) and away from parked cars, to reduce the risk of fire spreading.

Make sure you know the campsite’s fire safety arrangements and check where the nearest telephone is.

What to do if there is a fire

  • Keep calm and get everyone away as quickly as you can.
  • Call 999 and ask for the fire and rescue service and give the exact location; give a map reference if possible or give a landmark such as a pub or farm.

Staying in a tent

  • A fire can destroy a tent in 60 seconds. Make sure you:
  • never use candles in or near a tent; torches are safer
  • keep cooking stoves and barbecues away from tent walls as they could easily set alight
  • know how to escape by cutting your way out of the tent if there is a fire
  • don’t smoke inside your tent
  • never use BBQs inside or near the entrance of your tent - the carbon monoxide they produce can kill.

Carbon monoxide warning

  • Never bring a portable or disposable BBQ in a tent or awning to keep warm as this is a recipe for disaster. Hours after use they are still giving off poisonous carbon monoxide gases. BBQs are designed for cooking not for heating up spaces
  • Don't be tempted to cook inside your tent or awning, unless there's an area specifically designed for this purpose and you're sure there is adequate ventilation. To work safely BBQs need more ventilation than your tent or awning can provide and there's also the risk of fire.
  • Modern tents are designed as an integral structure with built-in groundsheets and this means that carbon monoxide gases can rise to fatal levels in a matter of minutes if a BBQ were to be used inside for heating purposes
  • Don't rely on a carbon monoxide detector to keep you safe in a tent or awning. They may be useful at home, in a caravan or in a motorhome, but they are not designed for the conditions found in a tent or awning
  • Please follow the link for more carbon monoxide advice.

Staying in a caravan

  • Fit and regularly test a smoke alarm in your caravan, optical alarms are usually most effective. We would also recommend that you install a carbon monoxide detector.
  • Take special care when cooking, don’t leave pans unattended.
  • Turn off all appliances before you go to bed.
  • Never dry clothes over the stove.
  • Remove any litter and rubbish near the caravan to reduce the risk of fire spreading.
  • Make sure the caravan is well ventilated to avoid a build-up of poisonous gases; never block air vents.
  • Consider keeping a fire extinguisher by the entrance to your caravan, but always read the ├é┬áinstructions before using it.
  • Please follow the link for more fire safety in caravans and mobile homes.

Using gas cylinders

  • Keep flammable liquids, such as petrol and gas cylinders, outside and away from children.
  • Regularly service and maintain all gas appliances to ensure they are working efficiently and reduce the risk of CO poisoning.
  • Only change gas cylinders when they are completely empty and store them away from caravans and vehicles.
  • Only change cylinders in the open air.
  • Make sure the gas pipe connection is secure. If you suspect a leak, turn off the main cylinder valve.


Charcoal barbecues

  • Keep a bucket of water, sand or a garden hose nearby for emergencies.
  • Always follow safety instructions.
  • Never use a barbecue indoors or inside a tent, the carbon monoxide that they produce can kill.
  • Never leave a lit barbecue unattended.
  • Ensure that you site your barbecue well away from fences, sheds, trees, shrubs and garden waste.
  • Only use enough charcoal to cover the base of the barbecue.
  • Be sure to keep children, pets and garden games away from the barbecue area.
  • Do not empty ashes into dustbins or wheelie bins. If the ashes are hot they can melt the plastic and cause a fire.
  • Never use petrol or paraffin to start or revive your barbecue, only use recognised lighters or starter fuel on cold coals.

Gas barbecues

  • Store gas cylinders outside and protect from direct sunlight and frost. Do not store more cylinders than you need.
  • Take care when turning bottled gas barbecues on and off.
  • Make sure the gas is turned off before changing the gas cylinder and always change cylinders in the open air or in a well-ventilated area.
  • After cooking, turn the gas supply off first and then the barbecue control. This will stop any gas from leaking.
  • Do not use the barbecue if you suspect a gas leak.
  • Ensure your gas barbecue is correctly serviced and make sure all joints are tightened, safe and secure.

All our safety information can be made available in other languages.  Please contact 0800 050 2999 to request a copy.

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