Although ‘upcycling’ may be the new ‘recycling’, the trade body representing the UK’s Liquefied Petroleum Gas (UKLPG) industry is warning budding artists and home renovators to think twice before cutting up old gas cylinders for their projects.
Following a number of recent police interventions throughout the UK, the LP Gas industry is concerned that individuals may be taking their lives into their own hands, as converting gas cylinders in this way can be highly dangerous as well as being unlawful.
Rob Shuttleworth, CEO of UKLPG, said: “LP Gas cylinders are portable, convenient and have a very good safety record, which is why they are used so widely in the UK to provide much needed heat and power.
“However, the isolated incidents of individuals irresponsibly selling, scrapping or converting these cylinders, thus risking life changing injuries or even death, should be a warning to everyone.”
LP Gas cylinders are safe when used correctly, in accordance with the manufacturer safety instructions. However, LP Gas is a highly combustible fuel and can explode if handled irresponsibly. Even if a cylinder appears empty, residue gas can be ignited by sparks caused by cutting the metal.
As well as the safety implications, tampering with cylinders or attempting to change their use is an unlawful offence which may result in legal action being taken against the perpetrator. Throughout the duration of their lives, gas cylinders remain the property of the gas cylinder company and should always be returned.
Two of the industry’s largest suppliers of LP Gas, Calor Gas and Flogas, have also backed UKLPG’s call for a focus on safety.
Paul Blacklock, head of strategy and corporate affairs at Calor Gas, said: “Not only is sawing open a gas canister unlawful, it is also highly dangerous. Decommissioning a gas canister is an extremely hazardous process which should only be carried out by qualified technicians, in specialist facilities and by the bottled gas company that owns the cylinder.”
Alan Kirk, operations director at Flogas, added: “We’ve all seen the online clips of people who have taken a risk and cut into a cylinder for a project. However, they are the lucky ones. Any vessel which contains a highly flammable and potentially explosive substance must be handled responsibly.”
For further safety advice, visit: http://www.uklpg.org/advice-and-information/safety-advice/