Cleveland Fire Brigade is urging residents to “Be safe not sorry” this bonfire season.
Last year there was a small decrease in deliberate fires across most of Cleveland during the bonfire period 24 October to 7 November – but this still cost the local community nearly half a million pounds.
We are reminding the public and in particular young people that unofficial bonfires are classed as arson and anyone found deliberately setting fires could end up with a criminal record.
Please don’t get involved in unofficial bonfires or let your children attend one. If you spot an unofficial bonfire being built please call your local council to remove the danger.
The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to attend an organised event. Events taking place in your area on Saturday, 5 November:
- Stockton Riverside, 6-8pm – free
- Seaton Carew Front, Hartlepool 4pm onwards, display starts at 6.30pm – free
- Acklam Rugby Club, 7pm onwards – entry charge.
If people must buy fireworks for use at home we would urge them to follow the Firework Code. This is not only for their safety but for that of their family and friends as well.
Follow the Firework Code
- Buy fireworks which comply with the British Standard (B7114)
- Only people aged 18 or over can legally purchase fireworks.
- Keep fireworks in a closed box
- Only adults should set fireworks off
- Follow the instructions on each firework
- Light all fireworks at arms-length
- Stand well back
- Always supervise children around fireworks and sparklers
- Keep pets indoors
- Never go back to a lit firework
- Never put fireworks in your pocket
- Never throw fireworks
- Don’t drink alcohol if setting off fireworks
- Don’t let off fireworks after 11pm
Stop Arson – Enough is Enough
If you have any information on arson, which could be about where it’s happening or who is responsible, call Crimestoppers confidentially on 0800 555 111, or Cleveland Police on 101.
For further advice visit:
- Visit the gov.uk website for more firework and bonfire safety information.
- Safer Fireworks RoSPA’s site to make sure your firework parties are safe and fun.
- H&SE Guide to Safety for Firework Display Organisers.
- Fire Service site – fireworks, follow links to bonfires and barbecues.