London Fire Brigade

Fire chiefs call for petrol can labelling

29 March 2012

London Fire Brigade is urging businesses to place warnings on both websites and petrol cans – some known as Jerry cans - so that people don’t accidentally fall foul of the law.

The law states that people should only store petrol in metal containers of a maximum of 10 litres (approximately 2 gallons) or plastic containers of a maximum of five litres (approximately 1 gallon) and people should have no more than two of each.

However, a number of websites are selling 20 litre metal and plastic fuel containers which, should people use these to take and store petrol at home with them, would break the law . Another concern for the Brigade is the sale of metal and plastic containers without the appropriate safety advice about how much or where petrol can legally be stored. By law, all containers that are storing petrol must be designed for the purpose and they must be marked ‘petroleum’ and ‘highly flammable’.  

Ron Dobson, Commissioner of the London Fire Brigade, said:

“We want businesses to act quickly and get the legal petrol storage messaging on petrol cans and on websites advertising these products. Members of the public need to know how much and where they are allowed to store, so that they do not accidentally break the law.

“The maximum limit on petrol storage is there to protect the public and it is important that people know how much they are legally allowed to keep.”

Petrol should be stored away from the house in either a shed or a garage, well away from people and anywhere where it might be close to a naked flame or other source of ignition.

Notes to Editors

People are planning on storing petrol they should only use containers built specifically for the purpose of carrying fuel.

More information can be found here