Recent reports of anglers feeling unwell during overnight fishing forays involving camping out in bivvies and tents has prompted the Environment Agency to remind people of a silent killer.

Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning is a deadly menace already well know to boaters, but anglers who camp out and use cookers, heaters and lamps run on fuels such as gas, paraffin or white spirit are at risk if the equipment is faulty or not used correctly.

“On average, two boaters die every year from CO poisoning. There are also a number of near misses, where people are discovered before disaster strikes, or they realise what is happening and manage to get into fresh air,” explained Environment Agency spokesman Adrian Westwood.

“But many of these accidents need not have happened. Both anglers and boaters can avoid tragedy by recognising the early signs of CO poisoning, such as nausea, dizziness, headaches and drowsiness.

“If a fuel-burning appliance, such as a cooker, is on and you start experiencing these symptoms, you should get out into the fresh air. If the symptoms persist, seek medical help and tell the doctor about a possible link to CO.

“There is also the potential and devastating danger of a fire ball when using faulty or incorrectly fitted pressurised gas cylinders in a confined space such as a bivvy tent.”