If you are celebrating Bonfire night this year, here are some important safety tips to take into consideration
It is recommended that you avoid fireworks at home, however, if you do wish to put on your own display, do make sure that you stick to the Fireworks Code:
• Buy fireworks marked BS 7114 only
• Never drink alcohol when responsible for fireworks.
• Keep fireworks in a closed and secured box – out of the reach of children.
• Follow the individual firework instructions carefully.
• Use a taper, and light fireworks from arm’s length.
• Enforce your own viewing area and stand well back.
• Never return to a lit firework, even if it hasn’t fired.
• Never put fireworks in your pocket, or allow others to, or throw them.
• Always supervise children, ensuring that they are in a safe viewing area
Minimise smoke by only burning dry material – small children panic easily and smoke can cause them to dash about near the flames.
Ensure the bonfire is well away from other flammable objects such as fences, overhanging trees, sheds, or where children will be playing.
Clearly mark out the border of the bonfire with stones or bricks.
Stand far back at a safe distance from the fire with your child – never leave a child unsupervised near the fire.
Always light the bonfire carefully. Petrol, paraffin or sprits should never be poured directly onto a fire. Use fire lighters to prevent sudden flare-ups
As with sparkler safety, keep buckets of water near to hand, or a connected hosepipe.
Children should never attempt to help an adult light a bonfire. Bonfires can be extremely dangerous, therefore a child should never assist in lighting, even if the fire is relatively small.
Wearing loose clothing is not advised but it is important that children know how to Stop, Drop and Roll if their clothes do catch fire. The instinct is to run. So, encourage them to practice stopping, dropping to the ground, covering their face with their hands, and rolling over a few times to put out the flames during a safety chat before the event. You don’t want to scare your kids, but it is vital that they understand that while it is a fun time, it can also be dangerous.
Anxious children may find it easier to watch from a distance, perhaps inside watching through a window if at home, or away from the crowds at an event, or they may like to wear ear defenders to dampen down the sound of the bangs.
However you are celebrating, enjoy and stay safe!