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Home » News & Events » 2015 » July » Set up camp safely: The hazards of the great outdoors

Set up camp safely: The hazards of the great outdoors

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As part of the Fire Kills campaign Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service (HWFRS) is asking the people of the two counties to stay safe this summer as they make the most of the weather and enjoy the great outdoors, whether camping, cooking or exploring.

Station Commander Alan Haley of HWFRS said "A long hot summer is what we hope for, however like many changes in activity, it can bring risks. You may be thinking about using sky lanterns for summer celebrations, but we recommend that you do not use sky lanterns as you have no control over them once they have been set up. They can kill animals, litter the countryside and can start fires. If you do choose to set them off, always follow the manufacturers' instructions carefully".

He continued: "If you're intending to take out your tent, ready your rucksack or get your caravan back on the road, you should go armed with some safety advice before heading for the great outdoors".

"By following the Fire Kills campaign's top tips you can ensure that your great adventure is a safe and enjoyable one".


  • Allow at least 6m spacing between tents and caravans and ensure they are away from parked cars to reduce the risk of fire spreading.
  • Never use candles in or near a tent – torches are safer.
  • Keep cooking appliances away from the tent walls and never cook inside a small tent or near flammable materials or long grass; they can all set alight easily.
  • Make sure you know how to escape by cutting your way out of the tent if there's a fire.
  • Make sure everyone knows how to put out clothing that's on fire – stop, drop and roll.
  • Don't smoke inside tents.


  • Fit and test a smoke alarm in your caravan.
  • Fit and test a carbon monoxide alarm in your caravan.
  • Take special care when cooking – don't leave pans unattended.
  • Turn off all appliances before you go out or to bed.
  • Make sure ashtrays are made of a material that can't burn or topple over –never smoke in bed.
  • Don't 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 ventilated, and never block air vents, to avoid a build- up of poisonous gases.

In closing Station Commander Haley said: "It may all sound a bit daunting but it needn't be, most of this advice is common sense. From time to time we all need reminders; so enjoy the countryside and your recreation and be safe."

Issued by Emma Roberts, Senior Community Risk Administrator on 01905 368238