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(53 Posts)
sassyTHEFIRST Thu 02-Jun-11 08:36:30

A tent fire which reduced a v large tent and EVERYTHING inside to ash in under 3 minutes.

The speed of it was the most terrifying thing ever.

Caused by a silly mistake - one of our group changed the canister on a gas lamp while the mantle was still hot so it ignited and shot out a 2 foot flame. The guy then dropped it and it rolled towards the tent - and whooosh. Horrible.Thankkfully noone was inside and apart from nasty burns on the guy's hand all are ok.

So we now have extra rules. No gas anywhere near tents (he was outside but clearly not far enough); no children inside sleeping compartments and especially not zipped up.

Oh yeah, and check insurance covers you before you go. This couple lost everything and their insurance won't cough because they weren't in a building. Two and a half grand's worth of kit and clothes, teddies, toothbrushes...sad

LilRedWG Thu 02-Jun-11 08:38:26

Christ, that's frightening.

takeonboard Thu 02-Jun-11 08:41:27

terrifying and very lucky that no one was in the tent

bigTillyMint Thu 02-Jun-11 08:59:54

OMG! How frightening shock

Wolfgirl Thu 02-Jun-11 09:01:08

Oh just awful. However, I do want to thank you for the reminder of how mindful we should be about such things. It clearly does not take much for such a horrid accident to happen. I shall certainly take care this year.

Just out of curiosity, where does everyone pitch their gas hobs... inside the porch, a bit further in their tent, or totally outside? We normally have it inside the tent, normally due to the weather etc.

sassyTHEFIRST Thu 02-Jun-11 09:01:47

It really was - both frightening and lucky. You know tents aren't fireproof, but I never expected one to catch like this one did. Even when it first caught on fire, we thought we'd be able to to put it out. But by the time we had water and extinguishers in hand it had all gone.

Please be careful guys. And make sure your kids aren't playing in zipped sleeping compartments.

sassyTHEFIRST Thu 02-Jun-11 09:03:17

We've always cooked under the canopy. But not any more - think we will buy a gazebo and pitch it some distance away from now on.

ChristinedePizan Thu 02-Jun-11 09:05:22

God, how awful but so glad no one was hurt sad

When you say no children inside sleeping compartments, how/where do they go to sleep?

Good point about insurance - I've just assumed we're covered on our standard policy but I will check

AuntieMonica Thu 02-Jun-11 09:06:44

how awful for this to have happened, it must have been extremely scarey to witness

will show this thread to DH, he's always trying to buy a tent with a sewn-in groundsheet shock sad

sorry about all your kit too, but at least the important things were safe


BriansMum Thu 02-Jun-11 09:07:43

I think she means playing inside sleeping areas during the day.

ChristinedePizan Thu 02-Jun-11 09:12:12

Oh I see, sorry, am half asleep. I quite often use the gas cooker when the kids are asleep but they are probably safer than those gas lamps which have always alarmed me because then you have gas in a tent. I only ever cook out of doors because I am too scared of the whole fire/tent thing

sassyTHEFIRST Thu 02-Jun-11 09:12:23

Yy no playing in zipped up sleepers

Wolfgirl Thu 02-Jun-11 09:17:20

I have one of those FIRE BLANKETS in my kitchen drawer at home, think I will take it with me this year.... and just for good measure, will go and purchase a small fire extiguisher.

Not liking this idea of a fire in the tent at all. Perhaps it is something we are all aware 'could' happen, but rarely if ever, have we seen it.

So again, thanks for sharing. This we can get a little blasaise with things.

HonestyBox Thu 02-Jun-11 09:22:46

I used to spend long periods living in a tent. Back then it was always standard practice to keep a knife in your inner in case of fire. It always made me a bit nervous to have a knife in the bedroom but I did follow that bit of advice.

dreamingofsun Thu 02-Jun-11 09:33:20

a child died a few years back at a local campsite. it was early in the morning and they thought the fire was caused by them playing with a gas fire or light in the tent whilst the parents were asleep.

dreamingofsun Thu 02-Jun-11 09:34:26

our tent says its fire retardent so surely that would stop it going up in flames?

ShowOfHands Thu 02-Jun-11 09:36:57

I remember back when I was a feckless teen and going to rock festivals. Many people would set fire to their tents in favour of, you know, packing them up and taking them home with them.

They go up in seconds and are ash in minutes. Terrifying really.

When camping we only ever cook with the car inbetween us and the tent. Provides wind shelter and means that there are never any naked flames near the tent.

Furball Thu 02-Jun-11 09:59:30

dreamingofsun - I've copied from the camping and caravan site:-

'No tent fabric is fireproof. Today most tent makers claim their fabrics are fire retardant but all tents will burn and most will burn remarkably quickly'

sassy - thank goodness you are all ok. you are welcome to a meet up meal the 1st July?

sassyTHEFIRST Thu 02-Jun-11 10:06:44

Furball- meetup good. I'd love to come, its been a while smile

Furball Thu 02-Jun-11 10:22:56

brilliant! - I'll get Littlefish to copy you in on the emails. (she's in the Caribbean at the mo though envy

LilRedWG Thu 02-Jun-11 10:25:15

Furball - is the the Worcestershire meetup? If so, can I come too please? If not, please excuse my crashingly ill manners and ignore me. smile

Furball Thu 02-Jun-11 10:32:19

of course you are welcome lilred - I'll pm you

bilblio Thu 02-Jun-11 15:42:32

How scary sassy! I watched a video on youtube a while ago of a tent fire. Terrifying. It lasted about 9 minutes, but by that point everything, including the bikes that had been next to the tent were unrecognisable.

Honestybox - I like the tip about keeping a knife handy. DD is too little to leave them lying around in the tent but I'll make sure I keep one in my pocket on camping trips instead.
We always take a fire extinguisher with us. I keep in the car the rest of the time, a fire blanket would be a good idea too... and I'll make sure DH sets the stove up further from the tent too.

Ephiny Thu 02-Jun-11 16:22:59

I would never light a stove or gas lamp inside the tent, I thought everyone knew not to do that! Of course there can still be accidents like the one in the OP, very lucky no one was in the tent - it could have been a lot, lot worse sad

lisad123 Fri 03-Jun-11 22:08:32

we have a folding camper, and the kitchin is in the folding trailer part. The gas bottle is outside, but no one is allowed in the trailer when Im cooking, think I will turning off the gas bottle every night at this rate, its valve controled.

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