The Great British weather has again been doing its best to disrupt our Jubilee and summer celebrations, but the spirit of the UK will not be beaten indoors.
In the Anglian portfolio of conservatory designs, we are lucky enough to have our Veranda Conservatory which can be used to great effect. We are still able to be in the warm when the weather has been bad, but also able to use the covered area to shelter under from the rain and tend to the BBQ from a safe and well ventilated area.
Great seating area available inside and out
However, for some, standing outside in the rain and the idea of a soggy BBQ has not stopped them, but with near fatal consequences from carbon monoxide poisoning by using and storing a charcoal barbecue in an enclosed area.
Over the weekend our local Ambulance Service spokeswoman said there was always a rise in calls related to carbon monoxide fumes from barbecues used in tents and conservatories during the summer. Barbecue’s must be used and stored after use in well ventilated areas, even after the heat has died down.
The effects of this colourless and odourless gas, make its presence difficult to detect. It occurs when domestic fuels such as gas, coal, wood and charcoal are burned. When fuel is burnt in an enclosed room, the oxygen in the room is gradually used up and replaced with carbon dioxide. If carbon dioxide builds up in the air, the fuel is prevented from burning fully and starts releasing carbon monoxide instead.
CO is very dangerous because it affects the red blood cells in your body and reduces the amount of oxygen which can be carried in the bloodstream to your brain and heart. This can lead to anoxic brain injury and possible death if not caught and treated in time.
Here are some top tips for your BBQ safety:
• Never take a smouldering or lit BBQ into a tent, caravan or conservatory! Even if you have finished cooking your BBQ should remain outside as it will still give off fumes for some hours after use
• Never use a BBQ inside to keep you warm
• Never leave a lit BBQ unattended or while sleeping
• Place your cooking area well away from your tent. Always ensure there is an adequate supply of fresh air in the area where the BBQ is being used
• Only use your BBQ in accordance with the operating instructions
• Remember the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning – headaches, dizziness, breathlessness, nausea, collapse and loss of consciousness.
If you’re using a gas BBQ or gas camping equipment follow these extra tips to help you stay safe:
• Check that the appliance is in good order, undamaged and that hoses are properly attached and undamaged. If in doubt get the hoses replaced or don’t use it
• Make sure the gas taps are turned off before changing the gas cylinder and do it in the open air
• Don’t over-tighten joints
• When you have finished cooking, turn off the gas cylinder before you turn off the BBQ controls – this means any gas in the pipeline will be used up
• Read the manufacturer’s instructions about how to check for gas escapes from hoses or pipework, e.g. brushing leak detection solution around all joints and looking for bubbles
The covered area allows air to circulate and disperse any nasty and dangerous smells.