South Scotland

'Very lucky escape' for family camping in Parton

Parton Image copyright James Bell
Image caption The family was camping in Parton, near Castle Douglas.

A family has been treated in hospital after suffering carbon monoxide poisoning during a camping holiday in Galloway.

They became unwell overnight after taking a barbecue into their tent at a campsite in Parton, after it was extinguished.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service said the group was only woken when their dog started being sick.

Firefighters said the two adults and two children had a "very lucky escape".

Jason Gardiner, community fire safety officer for Dumfries and Galloway, said: "Although the barbecue was out it still produced carbon monoxide, which would have filled the tent and could easily have resulted in the tragic loss of their lives."

He added: "In this case the family was only woken up by the sound of their dog being sick.

"The children were then violently unwell and they were all taken to hospital."

Barbeque fumes

He said the fire service was not involved in the initial incident at 01:00 on Wednesday, but they later checked the site and confirmed there were no signs of fumes from other sources.

They also spoke to other campers on the site who had a "potentially fatal misunderstanding" of the risk from barbeques, he said.

"Some people thought it was safe to bring them inside a tent once they were out, not realising that even an extinguished barbeque will give off fumes and in a confined space like a tent this could easily kill," he added.

"We don't want to see someone lose their life through something that could be so easily avoided. It's important all holidaymakers understand the risk posed by carbon monoxide and make sure barbeques aren't brought into the tent."

Each year, around 40 people die in the UK from carbon monoxide poisoning. Symptoms include tiredness, drowsiness, dizziness, chest pains and nausea.

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