BarbequesAs warmer weather approaches, most of us are likely to spend more time appreciating the outdoors. If you are planning on firing up the barbeque, you need to be aware of the fire safety hazards and how to protect yourself. Whether you’re enjoying a barbeque in your home garden or while camping, it is important to barbeque safely and responsibly. Depending on the type of barbeque you are using, different fire tips are advised. Before you make the most of the good weather, it is important to ensure your barbeque is in good working condition in order to rule out the risk of a fire. When it comes to lighting your barbeque, you must never use any flammable liquids. Instead, you should prepare in advance and buy charcoal to cover the base. Only use your barbeque in suitable and safe areas, away from sheds, fences, trees and shrubs to avoid the risk of fire. Never leave your barbeque unattended and make sure you extinguish them properly. Never put your barbeque in your tent, or tent porch, either during or after use, as it will release Carbon Monoxide fumes which kills.
Charcoal BBQsIf you are using a charcoal barbeque, you need to use proper charcoal starter fluid. In case of an emergency, always ensure there is close water supply, such as a bucket of water or sand nearby. Charcoal barbeques should be on a flat surface, without too much charcoal. Otherwise it could tip and start a fire on land. After fully extinguishing it, you must wait 48 hours before disposing of charcoal and ashes.
Gas BBQsWhen it comes to using a gas barbeque, you must check for propane leaks beforehand. If you need to change the gas cylinder, make sure the tap is turned off. To store a gas cylinder, they need to be kept in safe conditions, away from direct sunlight and frost. When you finish cooking, it is crucial to turn the gas supply off and then the barbeque control to prevent any leaks.
Camping SafetyDid you know a fire can destroy a tent in less than 60 seconds? To keep safe when camping or caravaning, you must ensure your caravans and tents are at least six metres apart and away from parked cars. This will reduce the risk of fire spreading. In the event of an emergency, it is useful to keep a torch nearby, not lighted candles. If you want to use a solid fuel stove, never use petrol or paraffin to light it. You must be aware of the fire-fighting arrangements on the campsite and where the nearest telephone is.
Outdoor FiresIn the UK, fire statistics show that on average 74,000 fires are started on grass and heath land every year. During the summer season, we are brought outdoor fetes, festivals, food shows etc. It is important to consider the fire safety tips when visiting these events. Generally most summer occasions are held in fields containing grass and heathland, which can become very dry in the hot weather. So if a fire is accidentally or deliberately started outdoors, it can spread incredibly fast.
- Dispose of cigarettes or smoking materials responsibly
- Use BBQs in suitable and safe areas - never left unattended
- Never start open fires in the countryside
- Sunlight shining through glass can start large fires - dispose of glass in safe areas e.g. recycling banks
- If camping or staying in a caravan, keep both at least six metres distance apart.
- Keep flammable liquids and gas cylinders away from tents
Electrical FiresElectrical fires are most common during the summer time, especially in offices or working environments where they’re not prepared to deal with a sudden heat wave. This encourages us to bring out our storage portable desk fans and portable air conditioning units to help keep us cool. Although this increases the hazard of electrical defects, without standard checks in place this could cause a fire.
- Increased Portable Air Con / Fans - overloading sockets.
- Broken Wiring Hazards
- Cover Air vents could pose risk of overheating and causing a huge fire
How can I Prevent an Electrical fire in the Summer?
- Don't overload electrical sockets, extension leads or adapters. If electrical sockets are overloaded, they can overheat and potentially burst into flames.
- Check the condition of portable device wiring. E.g. fraying, general wear and tear or loose plugs
- Make sure all portable items have been tested by a qualified company