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carbonmonoxidebealarmedAn estimated 55,000 people could be at risk of poisoning or death from carbon monoxide (CO) at this year’s Bestival. CO Be Alarmed! are urging festival goers to be aware of the dangers of carbon monoxide as Bestival opens its doors on Thursday.

CO is produced from various activities that take place at festivals; BBQs, bonfires, shisha pipes and gas cookers or heaters. When these items are used incorrectly in enclosed spaces it leads to a build-up of the poisonous gas which has no colour, taste or smell. Potentially carbon monoxide can be fatal, for you and for those around you.

Festival checklist:

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• Bring an audible CO alarm – You can get them from DIY shops, supermarkets, many high street shops and online; they cost around £15

• Don’t bring your barbeque inside an enclosed space, lit or extinguished

• Always keep any area well ventilated

• Check any appliances, cookers or heaters you bring have been serviced regularly

Carbon monoxide symptoms can be mistaken for a cold or the after-effects of a night’s partying. It causes dizziness, nausea, breathlessness and a loss of consciousness. In some cases this leads to permanent brain damage.

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To the thousands of festival fans off to Bestival take a portable CO alarm with you and make sure you use your fuel burning appliances safely in the open air.

If your alarm goes off or you spot other signs of carbon monoxide:

• Get out of the tent, gazebo or caravan immediately

• Stop using all your cooking and heating appliances that use fuels such as gas, oil wood, charcoal or coal. Seek immediate advice from a doctor if you think you have carbon monoxide poisoning or, if it is urgent, call 999 for an ambulance

• Call the relevant emergency advice line: Gas Emergency Service (24 hours) 0800 111 999

• Have all appliances serviced and checked. Do not use them until you are told they are safe to do so

Enjoy Bestival, know the dangers and stay safe.

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