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  1. ITV Report

Don't get burned by the barbecue

The fire service demonstrated how quickly barbecue fires can escalate. Photo: ITV Border

Add petrol to a barbecue, and things escalate quickly.

Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service has demonstrated this by setting up a controlled barbecue fire, to warn people to take care over the summer.

It's part of their 'Fire Kills' campaign, and they're offering the following advice:

  • Never leave a lit barbecue unattended
  • Follow the safety instructions
  • Make sure you set it up well away from sheds, fences, trees, shrubs or garden waste
  • Use enough charcoal to cover the base of the BBQ, but no more
  • Keep children, pets and garden games away
  • After cooking, wait until the BBQ has cooled down before moving it
  • Empty ashes onto bare garden soil, rather than bins. Hot ashes can melt the plastic and cause fires
  • Don't drink too much alcohol if you're in charge of the BBQ
  • Keep a bucket of water, sand or a garden hose close by for emergencies
  • Never use a BBQ indoors

Not using the barbecue indoors is a particularly crucial point, because they emit carbon monoxide, a gas that's difficult to detect, but can be fatal.

If the weather does deteriorate, and you feel like you want the barbecue to go ahead, a lot of people will take it indoors which is very dangerous due to carbon monoxide poisoning.

Same really with the disposable barbecues, a lot of people use them when they're camping, and again it's tempting to take it inside if the weather deteriorates."

– Will Richardson, Station Manager