Fireworks are great fun and very beautiful, but don't be fooled. Remember fireworks are explosives and can cause serious injury or death. Every year as many as 500 people are injured as a result of using or playing with fireworks and many more are burned using sparklers. Our advice this year is, as always, if you wish to see fireworks, go to a professionally organised display and leave it to the experts. Displays at home carry a far greater risk and are nowhere near as spectacular.
- Only ever buy British Standard marked fireworks in compliance with registered number: BS7 114
- Always keep your fireworks in a sealed metal box or biscuit tin. Never put fireworks in your pockets
- Ensure you read all instructions
- Always keep fireworks at arms length
- Never, ever throw a firework
- Once you light a firework, don't go back to it
- Make sure children are fully supervised and are wearing gloves when playing with sparklers
- It's a good idea to have a bucket of water close-by to extinguish used sparklers
- When building your bonfire, ensure that it is sited safely away from any hedges, buildings or fences, and have a garden hose ready in case of any emergencies
- Keep all pets indoors
- Fireworks and alcohol do not mix - it's a good idea to nominate an adult who isn't drinking at the party to be in charge of the fireworks
- So celebrate safely and always follow the Firework Code
Fireworks: A Message for Retailers
If you sell fireworks you must comply with the law. It is an offence under the Explosives Act 1875, as amended by the Explosives (Age of Purchase etc) Act 1976 and the Consumer Protection Act 1987:
- To keep fireworks (except for private use) on premises which have not been registered with the local authority for that purpose
- To sell fireworks to persons apparently under 18 years of age
- To throw or discharge a firework in a street or public place.
The maximum penalty for selling fireworks to persons apparently under the age of 18 is £2000. The local authority will be working closely with Trading Standards to ensure compliance with these regulations. For more information on your responsibilities visit the Directgov website.
If you are organising a public display visit the website of the Department for Communities and Local Government for information and advice on your responsibilities.