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Take care with fire, especially at this time of year!

2018 - October, Latest news

As winter approaches there are lots of occasions when fire is a big part of life. Whether it’s bonfire night, Diwali, candlelight or a roaring log fire, we’re more likely to be close to a flame at this time of year.

So it’s worth taking a few moments to consider the risks and make sure you can enjoy all your celebrations safely.

Two big potential hazards are fireworks and sky lanterns.

Sky Lanterns

The National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) has warned against the use of sky lanterns in any circumstances because of the very high risk they pose.

They may look pretty, but once released, it’s impossible to control them and they are known to have caused very many fires in the past. One of the worst, in the West Midlands, needed more than 200 firefighters, 39 fire appliances and 3 hydraulic platforms to bring it under control.Lanterns can also pose a hazard to wildlife and farm animals; and police and coastguards have wasted much time and money following up reports of distress signals that turned out to be paper lanterns.  PA Housing supports the NFCC stance and we ask you not to use them.

Fireworks

There are lots of common sense rules when it comes to fireworks and you should always follow the safety advice on the box.

But did you know some of those rules are actually law?  For example, you must not set off or throw fireworks, including sparklers, in the street or other public places.

You also can’t set them off between 11pm and 7am except on some days.

On bonfire night (5 November) there’s an extension until midnight; and for New Year’s Eve (31 December), Diwali (7 November) and Chinese New Year (5 February 2019) the cut off is 1am.

You could be fined up to £5,000 or sent to prison for up to 6 months for breaking fireworks law so it’s worth making sure you’re aware of all the regulations, including any local rules imposed by your council.

+ Avoid the risks by following these few simple rules:
+ Enjoy fireworks responsibly – go to an organised display if possible. If not, always follow the instructions on the box
+ Always buy from legitimate and licensed sellers
+ Be considerate (observe curfews)
+ Don’t let children handle fireworks
+ Keep pets safe

If this article has raised any concerns for you, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us.

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