Health and Safety Consultancy Services for SMEs in Birmingham, West Midlands and beyond

It’s BBQ Season – So Keep Those Gas Bottles Safe!
Posted by David Cant on June 19, 2015

It’s BBQ Season – So Keep Those Gas Bottles Safe!

Gas bottle safetyThe sun’s out. Burgers are getting prepped. Beers are stocked, chilled and ready to go.

What everyone is waiting for is for the barbeque to get fired up and started into action.

While we all love a sizzling great barbeque, don’t forget to stay safe around them! And no, that doesn’t mean just avoiding your Uncle Tim’s worryingly undercooked chicken kebabs…

Don’t lose your bottle

Barbeque season means that it’s time to stock up on the other big essential ingredient – and that’s bottled gas.

If you’re storing propane and butane gas bottles at home or at your business, then it’s really important that you know how to stay safe around them.

So what should you be watching out for? Here are 5 points you should keep in mind.

1. Check the size

How big is the bottle of gas that you’re storing? If they’re bigger than 15kg then you might need to store them outdoors

Check out this useful guide from Calor for more helpful points on how to store gas cylinders and cartridges safely.

2. Keep them separate

Propane and butane gas bottles must never be stored near other gas cylinders. There should be at least 3 metres space between them – or even better, a firewall.

Why? Because you could end up with a pretty nasty situation if they’re too close to other hazardous flammables, like oil or paint. Not something you want to try out.

3. Store them vertically

Keeping them neatly stacked and upright isn’t just to satisfy your inner Kim and Aggie – it actually has a health and safety reason too.

Just have a wonder about what could happen if those bottles of liquid gas were to topple over, for instance. Doesn’t really bear thinking about, does it? While you’re at it, make sure they’re kept in well-ventilated area, just in case there are any leaks.

4. Keep full and empty bottles separate

If you’re getting through a lot of bottles, then you’ll want to rotate through your cylinders.

Make sure the oldest ones are used up first, and keep empty containers in a separate location to avoid confusion.

5. Learn how to handle them properly

Last but not least, make sure that you know how you should handle and move gas bottles around.

Make sure they’re not rolled, dropped or thrown about. Even if they seem empty – they may still contain some gas, so don’t open the valve of an unconnected bottle. And don’t ever try to pick them up by the valve!

Your takeaway points…

Make sure you’re up to speed on how to stay safe around gas bottles around your site – keep these five essential points in mind:

  • check if the size of the bottle is permitted to be stored inside or outside
  • Keep propane and butane bottles separate from other flammable items
  • Always make sure that they are stored upright and vertically, in a well ventilated space
  • Keep full and empty bottles apart
  • Check that you know how to handle them safely

What health and safety issues have you come across this summer? Let us know!


Director at Veritas Consulting. 20+ years as a Chartered Safety and Health Practitioner with a brain you can pick. A trusted, risk savvy portfolio professional who is fluent in practical advice and an effective workplace solutionist.

You can find him on - Twitter and Facebook also Linkedin

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