Police warning: stay safe this bonfire night

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WARWICKSHIRE Police are reminding people to put safety first this bonire

When buying fireworks, please buy from a reputable retailer and remember that all fireworks sold to the public must comply to British Safety Standard BS 7114 so if in doubt check the packaging.

Safer Neighbourhood Teams have been visiting licensed firework sellers to remind them that it is illegal to sell fireworks to anyone under 18 years of age. Retailers could face a maximum penalty of £5000 and/or six months in prison if they do.

The sale of bangers, mini rockets, fireworks that fly erratically such as squibs, helicopters, aerial shells and maroons is also illegal as they could easily cause injury as they are so unpredictable.

Supt Bob Musgrove, Head of Warwickshire’s Neighbourhood Policing, said: “Please do not risk your own safety or that of others this bonfire night” saidSupt Musgrove said “As well as highlighting the dangers of fireworks, officers have visited schools to advise young people to behave responsibly during Halloween and Bonfire Night.

“Officers, PCSO’s and Specials will be working alongside Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service in the days leading up to and during Bonfire Night to discourage firework related antisocial behaviour and setting of fires.

“Please make contact with your Safer Neighbourhood Team if you had problems with anti social behaviour last year to build into our confidence patrols and please call on your neighbours and make sure they are alright if they are elderly or vulnerable.”

We’d also like to remind the public that it is illegal to set off any fireworks after 11pm at night. This time is extended to midnight for Bonfire night and you will need to wait until 7am the next morning before you can legally set off a firework again.

Glynn Gardner, Specials Chief Officer said: “We want people to have a safe enjoyable Bonfire Night and for that reason safer neighbourhood teams and special constables will be providing additional patrols in known hotspot areas across Warwickshire in the days leading up to and during Bonfire Night.

“Officers will be offering advice and guidance as well as looking for illegal or anti social behaviour during our patrols.“

“We will also be tweeting advice and information about Bonfire Night before and during the evening to reassure the community and let people know what we are doing to reduce any anti social behaviour.”

Please remember that as well as being extremely dangerous, it is illegal to let off any firework in a public place. This carries a maximum fine of up to £5000. Officers will also be able to issue an £80 Fixed Penalty Notice for less serious offences.

Whilst on patrol, officers have the power to stop and search anyone suspected of carrying fireworks.

Only trained professionals can possess “display” style (Category 4) fireworks. It is illegal for members of the public to have them in their possession.

Whilst the majority of people enjoy fireworks night, please be careful not to cause unnecessary suffering to animals with fireworks who do not understand what the noise is all about. It is illegal to do so and you could face a maximum penalty of £5000 and/or six months in prison.

Please also be careful not to provide fuel for opportunist bonfires by putting your rubbish and bulky waste out on the day of collection not before Bonfire Night is over.

Make sure you do not buy more fireworks than you need for Bonfire Night this year. Fireworks can only be stored for private use for up to 14 days, subject to them being stored in a safe place.