Petrol is a highly flammable and dangerous liquid which explodes because of the liquid vapour. Petrol stations can be very dangerous places if people ignore the signs and warnings. Any little ignition from a car, smoke or even a mobile phone can trigger an explosion because when petrol spills, it evaporates rapidly and produces a flammable gas.

This clip is from:
Science Clips, Gases around Us
First broadcast:
11 October 2007

Could be very useful as part of a topic on solids, liquids and gases. Pupils can explain their understanding of evaporation before they see the clip. A class discussion could be organised to talk about the children’s understanding surrounding the dangers of petrol in certain conditions. A local firefighting team could be invited into the class to re-emphasise the dangers of petrol and the process that happens when it ignites. Pupils could design safety posters explaining the dangers of having mobile phones, lit matches and lit cigarettes anywhere near petrol containers. A further investigation could be done to see if liquids evaporate at any temperature.