Bonfire night should be filled with fun and laughter, but unfortunately this is not always the case. In 2005, the number of people injured by fireworks was 990. These injuries occurred over a four week period around November 5th. (RoSPA)
Young people should watch and enjoy fireworks at a safe distance and follow the safety rules for using sparklers. Only adults should deal with firework displays and the lighting of fireworks. They should also take care of the safe disposal of fireworks once they have been used. Follow these top tips to stay safe:
1. Plan your firework display to make it safe and enjoyable
2. Keep fireworks in a closed box and use them one at a time
3. Read and follow the instructions on each firework using a torch if necessary
4. Light the firework at arm's length with a taper and stand well back
5. Keep naked flames, including cigarettes, away from fireworks
6. Never return to a firework once it has been lit
7. Don't put fireworks in pockets and never throw them
8. Direct any rocket fireworks well away from spectators
9. Never use paraffin or petrol on a bonfire
10. Make sure that the fire is out and surroundings are made safe before leaving.
These are often viewed as being harmless but they do burn at fierce temperatures. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents recommends that Sparklers should not be given to anyone under the age of five. To a young child, the heat from a sparkler is equivalent to the heat from a welding torch.
Safety rules for sparklers:
Always wear gloves with sparklers, preferably leather ones
Hold it at arm’s length while an adult lights it for you
Never wave it about near someone else as you could burn them
Never hold a baby in your arms when you are holding a sparkler
When the sparkler has finished, put it into a bucket of cold water straight away and leave it there.
And finally, don’t forget your pets. Animals do not like bonfires or fireworks. The flames and noise upsets them. They should always be kept safely indoors. Make sure that they cannot get out through open windows and doors. It is best to keep the curtains closed too and it may be necessary to keep them indoors for several nights around November 5th.
As long as everyone follows the above safety tips and remembers that fireworks and sparklers can be dangerous if misused, a good, safe time can be enjoyed by everyone. Enjoy your celebrations.
Hi, my name's Sarah Mellor and I own Salopian Health & Safety. I help make sure that my business clients in the Shropshire area are compliant with the latest Health & Safety laws. If you worry that your...