Fire brigades up and down the country will again be urging us all to take care with fireworks and bonfires.
London Fire Brigade take the opportunity to point out the legal position:
It is an offence for anyone under the age of 18 to possess fireworks in public places and an offence for anyone, other than a firework professional, to possess professional display fireworks.
Police have the power to issue fixed penalty notices to those under the age of 18 caught with fireworks in a public place.
It is illegal to set off fireworks between 11pm and 7am. On 5 November, displays can continue until midnight and on certain occasions, such as New Year’s Eve, Diwali and Chinese New Year, fireworks can be set off until 1am.
Firework safety code
- Only buy fireworks marked with the British Standard Kitemark BS7114
- Don’t drink alcohol if setting off fireworks
- Keep fireworks in a closed box and always follow the instructions carefully when using them
- Light them at arms length using a taper and stand well back
- Never go back to them once they are lit. Even if a firework hasn’t gone off, it could still explode
- Never throw fireworks and never put them in your pocket
- Respect your neighbours – don’t let off fireworks late at night and remember there are laws to follow
- Take care with sparklers – never give them to children under five. Even when they have gone out they are still hot so put sparklers in a bucket of water after use
- Keep your pets indoors throughout the evening
- Build your bonfire well clear of buildings, garden sheds, fences and hedges
- Never use flammable liquids to start a bonfire and never burn dangerous items such as aerosol cans, paint tins, foam furniture or batteries
- Don’t leave bonfires unattended. An adult should supervise it until it has burnt out. If it has to be left, damp it down with plenty of water
- Always keep a bucket of water or a hosepipe nearby in case of fire