Bonfire Night plea to beware dangerous ‘cheap’ fireworks sold via social media
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Warnings are going out over Bonfire Night dangers - including ‘cheap’ fireworks sold on social media.
The safety calls come as more families prepare for mini firework displays at home on Thursday, November 5 - the first day of lockdown.
Sasha Watson, community engagement officer for Suffolk Trading Standards, warned against buying “bargain” fireworks online.
She said: “Fireworks are dangerous items and it is illegal to sell them to under-18s. You should only buy fireworks from reputable sources. Do not be tempted to buy cheap fireworks from sellers on social media.
“They will not be licensed, so you cannot guarantee how the fireworks have been stored and if they comply with Firework Regulations.
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“This increases the chance of them being dangerous, not working correctly and possibly causing serious physical harm.”
MORE: ‘Don’t burn household waste on Bonfire Night’ Dale Nunn, prevention manager for Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Fireworks and bonfires pose the same fire risks all year round and require very particular attention.
“Fireworks are classed as explosives and must be stored extremely securely and all manufacturer’s guidelines followed.
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“As there will be no organised, public bonfire night and fireworks events this year due to Covid-secure restrictions, people need to think about what the safest thing is to do.
“Ultimately, we do not recommend that people try to recreate such seasonal events in their own gardens or public spaces.”
Both Trading Standards and the Fire and Rescue Service are suggesting people should find other ways of celebrating, and Trading Standards has linked to art and craft ideas and recipes from its Facebook page.
Animal charities have also warned over distress to pets, and issued advice for how to calm dogs while fireworks are going off.
MORE: How can you help dogs scared by back-garden fireworksFirework safety advice
• Keep fireworks in their original packaging, dry and away from sources of heat and ignition, and away from children and animals.
• Sparklers can be enjoyed safely, but children must have close adult supervision. Keep sparklers at arm’s length away from the body, and never touch a finished one.
• Bonfires should always be kept away from buildings, sheds, fences and trees, as fire can easily spread.
• Dangerous objects like aerosol cans and batteries should never be thrown into a fire.
• Always have a bucket of water or hose ready, just in case.
• Dogs and cats should be kept inside and should have a hiding place where they can retreat to, to feel safe.