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Fire service issue Hogmanay fireworks warning

By Alan Beresford

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AS Hogmanay and the new year approaches, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is warning of the dangers of using fireworks in private events.

DACO Alasdair Perry: Fireworks warning
DACO Alasdair Perry: Fireworks warning

With many public events cancelled due to Covid-19, families and communities are being reminded that using fireworks in gardens and common areas can have devastating consequences.

Improper use of fireworks can cause serious injuries, distress pets and neighbours and impact on the work of Scotland’s emergency services.

Deputy Assistant Chief Officer (DACO) Alasdair Perry is the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service’s Head of Prevention and Protection.

He said: "With public events unable to go ahead, we may see people hosting private events in their gardens to mark the festive season and perhaps new year’s eve.

“However, we must warn communities that fireworks are explosives at the end of the day, and if not used properly their use can cause life-changing injuries.

“I would urge anyone considering purchasing fireworks to be well aware of both the dangers and the essential safety guidance.”

The SFRS has created a Fireworks Code to help keep communities safe.

DACO Perry added: “If you are going to buy fireworks, then make sure it is from a reputable seller.

“Always follow the instructions carefully and follow our firework code.

“We want everyone to bring in the new year safely, so please do not take any risks as we say goodbye to a difficult year for all of us.”

The call has also been backed by the Scottish Government.

Community Safety Minister Ash Denham said: “It is vital that on Hogmanay the public adhere to the rules restricting travel between different local authority areas and meeting up with other households. Under both level 4 and level 3 restrictions it is not possible to meet up indoors or in large groups outdoors on Hogmanay.

“With large, organised Hogmanay firework displays cancelled this year - we know that some people may consider using fireworks in their back gardens. If you do plan on using fireworks please do so responsibly and safely. If we all play our part we can ensure that Hogmanay this year is safe and enjoyable for everyone.”

To view the fireworks code and find more information on how to stay safe around fireworks, visit, https://www.firescotland.gov.uk/your-safety/fireworks-safety.aspx

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