Using gasoline to start a campfire is very dangerous but using proper precautions you can start a campfire in an emergency.
It’s very important advice, every one of use should mind it and should try to act upon it. It is advisable to avoid its use for starting a fire because gasoline is the most powerful source and it is very dangerous if not properly handled. The number one hazard of gasoline is fire or explosion, especially gasoline in vapor form because vapors are heavier than air.
Taking proper precautions are mandatory. Gasoline must be stored in an approved tank or a container. If children are with you in camp try to keep them away from it. Wash your hands properly after its usage. Try to use it in an open area and do not leave the container in direct sun. Avoid prolong breathing of gasoline vapors and extinguish your cigarette pipe etc.
A campfire should be positioned in cleared areas, there should be no overhanging branches, make it sure that your campfire is a safe distance from your camp, and also make it sure your all camping tools is away from fire especially flammable materials should be away from the fire such as fuel cans and gas bottles and ensure the fire stays a controllable size.
It is advisable not to use petrol or gasoline for a campfire but if you are in an area with bad weather and one cannot start a campfire by general methods then a petrol or gasoline is a better choice but it needs proper attention because its highly flammable and it can cause problems. Safety equipment should be there with you.
There are certain areas where a campfire is not allowed. One has to take permission from the authorities and using gasoline is such areas make it more dangerous. There may be several reasons for banning campfire in these areas like a nearby population or a dense forest. In such a scenario one has to take permission from the authorities.
Collect your wood and place it in an open area. Keep distance from your camp. Do not drop gasoline as a whole. Take a long wood piece and drop gasoline drops on it, the drops that fall on the ground should be covered with soil or sand, etc. to avoid fire. Do not hold the wet end of the wooden piece.
Using a match stick carefully to the wet end and try to throw it to the collected woods. The rest of the wood would burn with that wood slowly. Try to stay away for 5 to 7 minutes from fire. Making a circle of bricks or stones around the campfire is a good idea. Now you can enjoy campfire but try to stay safe.
In short, you can use gasoline to start a campfire but one cannot ignore the risk related to the usage of gasoline. It would be a lot better to use a firelog, or some paper, and twigs.