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Firework safety
Bonfire and firework safety

Remember, remember, professionally run displays are safer to attend than home displays.


Bonfire safety leaflet

If you decide to have a display at home, please read the advice below and download the leaflet for more information




Disposal of fireworks

Put fully spent fireworks (not misfired or partly spent) in a refuse bin. Soak misfired, unused or partly spent fireworks in a container of water in a safe place. Contact the manufacturer or supplier for advice on disposal.


The fireworks code

  • Only buy fireworks marked BS 7114
  • Don't drink alcohol if setting off fireworks
  • Keep fireworks in a closed box
  • Follow the instructions on each firework
  • Light them at arm's length, using a taper
  • Stand well back
  • Never go near a firework that has been lit. Even if it hasn't gone off, it could still explode
  • Never put fireworks in your pocket or throw them
  • Always supervise children around fireworks
  • Light sparklers one at a time and wear gloves
  • Never give sparklers to a child under five
  • Keep pets indoors
  • Don't let off fireworks after 11pm


Bonfire safety

If you are having a bonfire, to get rid of garden waste or as part of a celebration, follow our simple tips to make sure you, your property and others are safe.

Building a bonfire

  • Only burn dry material. Damp material causes more smoke
  • Build the bonfire away from sheds, fences and trees
  • Check there are no cables, like telephone wires, above the bonfire
  • Don't use petrol or paraffin to get the fire going, it may get out of control quickly


Bonfire safety tips

Once the bonfire is lit, make sure you:

  • keep a bucket of water or a garden hose nearby, in case of emergencies
  • don't leave the bonfire unattended
  • keep children and pets away from the bonfire
  • don't throw any fireworks into the fire
  • don't burn aerosols, tyres, canisters or anything containing foam or paint, many produce toxic fumes and some containers may explode, causing injury
  • spray the embers with water (once the bonfire has died down) to stop it re-igniting.


Did you know?

  • On average, 127 fires in homes and buildings in the UK are started by fireworks every year.
  • The majority of firework-related injuries happen at family or private parties.
  • It is an offence to throw or discharge a firework in a street or public place and can result in prosecution and a fine of up to £5000.
  • It is against the law to carry fireworks in public if you're under 18.
  • Fireworks must not be sold to anyone who is under 18.
  • It is an offence to let fireworks off during night hours (11pm to 7am), except on Bonfire Night (midnight), Diwali, New Year, and Chinese New Year (1am).
  • It is an offence under the Explosives Act 1875 to tamper with or modify fireworks.
  • Sparklers can reach temperatures more than 15 times hotter than boiling water.
  • If you have concerns regarding a neighbour's nuisance bonfire, please see your local council's website for advice.

Sky or Chinese Lanterns

We do not recommend their use due to the fire hazards and risks they pose to property, crops, livestock and the environment.

All our safety information can be made available in other languages.  Please contact 0800 050 2999 to request a copy.

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