Celebrating safely with fireworks

Unfortunately, most of the large-scale fireworks displays for Guy Fawkes Night have had to be cancelled this year due to the pandemic, including those in Battersea, Southwark Park, Blackheath and Alexandra Palace. The Mayor of London has announced that New Year’s Eve fireworks are not going ahead and restrictions will also affect Diwali celebrations, or the Festival of Lights, on 14 November as events move online or are scaled back to limit reveller numbers.

If you intend to get together with friends or family for a private celebration, please check the latest government rules on meeting with others safely to limit the spread of coronavirus and bear in mind safety issues associated with the use of fireworks. Only adults should deal with setting up firework displays, the lighting of fireworks and the safe disposal of fireworks once they have been used. Children and young people should watch and enjoy fireworks at a safe distance.

Firework Code 

You can make your party safe and fun by following these precautions: 

  • Plan ahead to make your firework display safe and enjoyable  
  • Keep fireworks in a closed box and use them one at a time 
  • Read and follow the instructions on each firework using a torch if necessary 
  • Light the firework at arm's length with a taper and stand well back  
  • Keep naked flames, including cigarettes, away from fireworks  
  • Never return to a firework once it has been lit  
  • Don't put fireworks in pockets and never throw them  
  • Never use paraffin or petrol   
  • Before leaving, make sure that the fire is out and surroundings are made safe   
  • Don’t forget your pets – they should be kept indoors whilst the fireworks are being set off 

The number of injuries resulting from the private use of fireworks has been rising over the years with data from NHS Digital showing that in 2018 almost 2,000 people, many of them children, visited A&E with a firework injury. Please stay safe and enjoy a party that is more ooh and aah than ouch!

You can read more on the British Fireworks Association website.