Bonfire Night is always an eagerly anticipated event on the calendar, with people heading out to local events to sample the atmosphere, see the fireworks and gather around the bonfire. Amidst all of the excitement, the smells of hot food and the incredible displays in the sky, is the trepidation of parents fearing for the safety of their little ones, along with the noise of the fireworks and the common risks associated with lighting them at home.
While they are undoubtedly exciting and special nights, bonfire and firework events always have risks attached to them – even those taking place at home. The lighting of fireworks and sparklers, combined with the loud bangs and fire safety in general can all make it a bit too much for some people, especially those with young families. However, there are measures that you can take to ensure that you minimise those risks and remember, remember, the 5th of November for all the right reasons!
Our top tips to stay safe this Bonfire Night
Whether you’re heading out to an organised event or having your own show at home, our top tips will help you stay safe and fully enjoy your family time this Bonfire Night:
- Keep away from the fireworks. Standing well back from the fireworks won’t just protect your ears and ensure that the risk of injury is minimised, but it will also help you see the full display in all its glory!
- Make sure pets are safe and indoors. Animals can find Bonfire Night incredibly distressing with the loud bangs, so be sure to keep them indoors and check on them regularly to make sure they’re okay.
- Never return to a lit firework. Just because the firework has gone up and exploded, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s cold and can’t go off again. Similarly, just because it didn’t go off as planned, it doesn’t mean that it won’t so do not try and re-light it.
- Don’t hand sparklers to children under the age of 5. Sparklers can be very exciting for children, making shapes in the night sky and spelling out their names -but they can also be very dangerous.
- Insert sparklers into a carrot. One great tip shared by many parents and safety experts is to put the handle of the sparkler into a carrot, providing a larger gap between the flame and the hand.
- Keep a bucket of sand or water nearby. When you’re finished with your sparkler or home firework display, be sure to douse your sparkler or any fireworks that have burned out with water or sand to reduce the heat and stop them from lighting up again.
- Wrap up warm! Don’t forget that it’s November and your display will be taking place outdoors! The chill can ruin the evening for some so be sure to put on warm clothes and plenty of layers so that you can enjoy Bonfire Night.
- Don’t wear loose clothing. With that in mind, it’s worth remembering that loose clothing can catch fire. If you’re handling sparklers or lighting fireworks, ensure that your coat is fastened and scarf is tucked in at all times.
- Wear gloves. A pair of gloves won’t just keep your hands warm, it will also provide an additional layer of protection if you’re handling a sparkler.
- Don’t light a Bonfire using petrol. This is especially for parents and event organisers. We need a way of lighting a bonfire initially, but never use petrol as this can cause the fire to get out of hand. Light small, separate areas of your bonfire and allow it to burn naturally to help keep it under control.
Stay safe and remember to have fun!