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Bonfire Night safety Posted by alona zakharchenko , Posted on 09/10/2019

Bonfire Night

Bonfire Night is one of the most traditional and fun nights of the British cultural calendar. However, it is also one of the most dangerous. This is essentially the case because when you mix merriment, kids, pets, and crowds with fireworks and flames, accidents can be the result. However, it really doesn’t have to be that way, and there are plenty of things you can do to make sure your night goes off with a bang, in the best possible sense.                                                                                                                                   

It’s worth starting with some Bonfire Night statistics to make you realise just how dangerous it can be. Last year, there were 990 injuries caused by fireworks in October and November. A massive 494 of those were children injured by sparklers and fireworks. Around 121 of those injuries took place at public displays but a whopping 475 happened at private parties. Of the total number of injuries, 285 of them were eye injuries.

So, what we can learn immediately from this is that kids are at greater risk, public displays are much safer and your eyes are a weak spot. So, always let adults light the fireworks safely, wear gloves and goggles if necessary and if at a private party, always pay attention.

There are also some important dos and don’ts to remember for staying safe during the course of the night. For example, don’t ever:
• Go near a firework after it has been lit
• Use sparklers without gloves
• Locate the bonfire near trees or buildings
• Go near a firework even after it has gone off

However, you should always do the following:
• Stand well back from fires and fireworks
• Light one sparkler at a time and keep them at arm’s length
• Keep your pets inside
• Check the bonfire for animals before lighting it
• Keep a bucket of water close by for emergencies

These are some fairly simple and straightforward rules for staying safe and by following them closely, you will significantly reduce your risk of injury.

Remember that adults should always be paying attention to any children present. Supervise any sparklers given to children and make sure they stick to the above rules. It’s also worth remembering that even though it’s loads of fun, it can get cold at night during this time of year. Wrap up warm with hats, gloves and scarves.

Other things you need to have with you during the evening are a metal box for storing the fireworks. This will keep them safe from sparks and other flames. A torch for reading the instructions is also essential and a non-flammable board for flat-bottomed fireworks is also a good idea.

Bonfire Night is a great British tradition but one that can be spoiled by bad luck, poor planning and foolish behaviour. Be aware of these pitfalls and there is no reason you can’t have a great, safe night with the family.