Isle of Wight Council

Isle of Wight Festival

Camping Safety Message

Camping Safety Poster


Carbon Monoxide

The Isle of Wight Fire & Rescue Service is sending out a safety message for campers to beware of the dangers of carbon monoxide from BBQs and camping stoves.

Make sure your camping light and stove are clean and properly adjusted. Never take a portable barbecue or lit charcoal into an enclosed space like a tent or caravan. Make sure exhaust from generators is properly vented away from occupied areas.

Carbon Monoxide (CO) is a colourless, odourless, highly poisonous gas that can kill in minutes. Carbon Monoxide poisoning can be caused by any fuel that burns or smoulders.

Watch out for the symptoms, which include:

  • Mild headache.
  • Dizziness.
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting.
  • Fatigue.
  • Drowsiness.

More information can be found on the IWC Facebook 


When you are going camping, follow these basic precautions to reduce the risk of fire starting and spreading:

  • Never use candles in or near a tent - torches are safer.
  • Before you set off, get contact details of the local fire and rescue service.
  • Set up tents at least six metres apart and away from parked cars.
  • Make sure you know what the fire arrangements on the camp site are and where the nearest telephone is.
  • Don't smoke inside a tent.
  • Place your cooking area well away from the tent.
  • Keep your cooking area clear of items that catch fire easily ('flammable items'), including long, dry grass.
  • Put cooking appliances in a place where they can't easily be knocked over.
  • Keep matches, lighters, flammable liquids and gas cylinders out of the reach of children.
  • Have an escape plan and be prepared to cut your way out of your tent if there is a fire.



Leisure activities such as barbecues should be relaxing and enjoyable experiences.  But, cooking over hot coals cans be hazardous and people can easily be distracted when in the company of friends and family.

Barbecue messages include:

  • Enjoy yourself, but don't drink too much alcohol if you are in charge of the barbecue.
  • Keep a bucket of water, sand or a garden hose nearby for emergencies.
  • Follow the safety instructions provided with disposable barbecues.
  • Never use a barbecue indoors.
  • Never use petrol or paraffin to start or revive your barbecue; use only recognised lighters or starter fuels on coal.
  • Never leave a barbecue unattended.
  • Make sure your barbecue is well away from sheds, fences, trees, shrubs or garden waste.
  • Empty ashes onto bare garden soil, not into dustbins or wheelie bins.  If they're hot, they can melt the plastic and start a fire.


In recent years there have been a few occurrences of people suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning as a result of lighting a barbecue in a tent or other enclosed space.  Discover information on carbon monoxide safety from the Gas Safe Register, who has responsibility for promoting carbon monoxide messages on behalf of the Health and Safety Executive.

Carbon monoxide poisoning or hangover? Know the symptoms - Gas Safe Register

Carbon-monoxide-camping-safty.pdf (