"Terrible gas fire camp accident! Dose anyone know the actual cause so we can be

Submitted: Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 21:05
ThreadID: 84685 Views:3469 Replies:11 FollowUps:4
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Hi All
It was very sad to read about the terrible camping accident with a camp fire and gas bottle.
Its quite horrible.
It would be good to know the actual reason the accident occured so we could all be more informed and hopefully stop anything like this occuring again.
Any insights would be helpful.
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Reply By: SPRINT-GTO - Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 21:22

Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 21:22
On ch9 news it was advised a gas light tipped over near a campfire and gas leaking from light exploded.
AnswerID: 446939

Reply By: patsproule - Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 21:52

Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 21:52
I have actually had it happen to me - a newly filled (over?) bottle with a gas lantern that spat liquid rather than gas out when ignited. It was in the middle of a campsite full of people when it went up, with me hanging on! Knowing that there was 100 litres of boat fuel stored nearby my immediate reaction was to run in the other direction away from the campsite with the burning lantern. Perhaps not the brightest idea but I wanted to get it away from everyone else. One of the other campers reacted just as quickly by grabbing an extinguisher, chasing after me and the burning lantern quickly putting out the fire. It all happened in a matter of seconds. I only suffered 2nd degree burns to my arm but still have some scars. I prefer battery power now.

AnswerID: 446944

Follow Up By: Member - G N (VIC) - Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 22:11

Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 22:11
Hi Pat

interesting and scarey

the experience you had, did it actualy explode or is there enough big flame from the liquid LPG to do the damage?

so was it the companion type where there in no regulator?

i have heard of a few now, of the caniter type also exploding.

FollowupID: 719285

Reply By: SDG - Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 22:41

Monday, Feb 28, 2011 at 22:41
What about the gas bottle simply being to close to the fire and simply overheating, thus having the release valve vent the remaing gas in the bottle which ignites.

It would react similar to a stones bomb that was for many years a regular sight at bike rallies, now frowned upon.

I have seen cans of baked beans explode because they were to close to the fire.

AnswerID: 446956

Reply By: Member - Rodney B- Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 00:01

Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 00:01
Sounds like it just leaked and spread around the camp before igniting.
Will be interested in the circumstances also. Possible leak around the connection?
AnswerID: 446962

Follow Up By: smithy_1 - Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 19:08

Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 19:08
I believe it was a leak. Remember that GAS is heavier than air, and flows downhill and can collect in gullies and low spots. If the leaky gas bottle (eg. gas cooker) was on higher ground, and the campfire and tent on lower ground, then the leaking gas can flow into tent, and onto fire, with disasterous results.

Gas bottles always should be put lower down on the campsite area than everything.
FollowupID: 719361

Reply By: Nomadic Navara - Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 00:28

Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 00:28
From the grey nomads forum

"This event happened 1/2 hour drive from here, local news tonight said that there was an altercation, & the gas bottle was kicked into the fire.
Alcohol use is being investergated, doesn't sound like an accident."

Retired radio and electronics technician

Lifetime Member
My Profile  Send Message

AnswerID: 446966

Reply By: petesgq - Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 11:51

Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 11:51
Stay away from Gas laterns and gas BBq.

I use the coleman Kero pressurised latern and fule stove.

Gas is far to volitile a fuel with possible explosion.

I have seen a car blow up that had stored his bottle in the boot. It was across the bridge at lake eildon Victoria along time ago, it just went bag with car coming to a rolling halt in a burning ball of fire. (at least it was quick for the driver as the explosion was big and blew out all the windows.)
You can get coleman petrol stoves as well, not a safe as kero but far safer than Gas.
AnswerID: 446999

Reply By: gonebush SA - Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 23:17

Tuesday, Mar 01, 2011 at 23:17
our news said that the fire occured because the gas bottle was being stored in the tent with the boy asleep in there and the bottle was leaking and as the fire was close to the tent the gas leaked out to the fireplace and caboom!!. which ever way it happened, it must have been terrible and painful, so we wish all those involved a speedy recovery.
AnswerID: 447046

Reply By: SDG - Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 00:11

Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 00:11
Sounds like the gas was leaking from different reports. Maybe the true info will never been know, but somthing that I have not heard any where. Was the gas bottle in date? Out of date bottle could mean faulty valve, and before the comment is made that you can not fill an out of date bottle, guess again. I accidently took the wrong bottle down last month to fill. Was only when I got home I realised it was about ten years out of date.
AnswerID: 447051

Reply By: Mel59 - Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 08:51

Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 08:51
I don't know the details of this case but the scariest thing I have seen was some campers at Central Station on Fraser Island about 10 years ago.

They had a 4.5kg bottle with a light on a 1 metre extension. it was knocked over and the valve broke/came off/ damaged. It turned into a 5metre blow torch luckily not a lot of gas as it only flamed a couple of miinutes. all we could do was keep everyone back and let it burn out. as the gas is coming out under pressure the bottle would not explode I am told.

AnswerID: 447062

Reply By: Trevor R (QLD) - Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 16:59

Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 16:59

What an array of answers and causes.

I am in Port Macquarie now and read in today's local paper that the extension pole broke with gas leaking out and catching alite causing the bottle to spin around with the effect of a flame thrower burning everything within it's reach. Sounds like there were a few heroic people involved with one running to get the lad out of a burning tent and taking the brunt of the flames as he did.

The paper also said that a gas fuse could prevent similar incidents from occurring, well worth the $50 these devices cost.

Hope this is an accurate depiction of the event and my appologies to anyone concerned if I have relayed the story I read in the paper inaccurately. It is not my intention to aggregate what would be a very touchy subject for those involved.

Regards, Trevor.
AnswerID: 447104

Follow Up By: Trevor R (QLD) - Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 22:28

Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 22:28

I just foundThis link which is the article I was reading today.

Let's hope all involved make a full recovery and the rest of us learn something from this terrible incident.

Cheers, Trevor.
FollowupID: 719460

Reply By: Muddy.au - Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 21:21

Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 21:21
But surely the simple, safer option is to replace the gas and use 12v lighting and pump stoves to cook, yes you have to carry fuel but its not under pressure and often in a smaller quantity, also carrying gas bottles inside a car is unsafe.
AnswerID: 447148

Follow Up By: Member - Bob G (VIC) - Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 22:03

Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011 at 22:03
Google search located the following

The Sunday Telegraph
80 per cent of boy's body burnt
Gas bottle ignited by camp fire

A six-year-old boy has suffered horrific burns after his tent and sleeping bag ignited in a campground fire in the Mid North Coast.

Emergency services were called to the Point Plummer Camping Ground about 11pm yesterday after gas from a damaged bottle was ignited by a camp fire, reported The Daily Telegraph.

Four were flown to Sydney including the six-year-old from Crescent Head, who suffered burns to more than 80 per cent of his body.

Police said a 42-year-old man from Port Macquarie also sustained burns to 80 per cent his body, and was in Royal North Shore Hospital in a very serious condition.

A 40-year-old woman and 15-year-old girl were also flown to Sydney and remain in a serious condition.

Three people are being treated in local hospitals with major burns including another 15-year-old girl and two 20-year-old men.

"A large number of campers came to the aid of the injured and rendered first aid until help arrived," police said in a statement.

"A crime scene was established and has been examined by specialist officers. Police have also spoken with a number of witnesses."

Officers hope to interview the injured campers when they are well enough
FollowupID: 719457

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