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Bonfire Safety Advice From Yorkshire Coast Emergency Services

Bonfire Safety Advice From Yorkshire Coast Emergency Services

Published by Matthew Pells at 8:25am 2nd November 2019.

Emergency services in Scarborough, Whitby, Filey and Bridlington have issued safety advice ahead of the weekend bonfire events.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service  is reminding everyone to stay safe. They say that every year the ambulance service is called to patients who are injured by fireworks or bonfire-related incidents.

Dr Julian Mark, Executive Medical Director at Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust, said:

“During the next few days, and especially over the weekend, our staff will be responding to patients with injuries ranging from minor burns to more serious, life-threatening conditions.

When used properly fireworks are generally safe and accidents are avoidable, but if safety precautions are not followed they can cause terrible injuries.

We want everyone to have fun, but always recommend that people go along to professionally organised public fireworks displays.  If you are planning to host your own event, please ensure that safety is your main priority so that everyone is aware of dangers and takes the necessary precautions.”

The advice from the Ambulance service is that in the event of an accident with fireworks or bonfires you need to act quickly: 

  • If the patient or their clothing is alight, extinguish any flames by rolling them on the ground.
  • Use cold water (ideally cold running water for 20 minutes) to cool the burned area and reduce pain. 
  • Do not remove burned clothing which has stuck to the skin. 
  • Do not use skin creams or oils. 
  • Seek urgent medical help if injuries are serious by calling 999. 
  • For minor injuries, call NHS 111 or visit a minor injuries unit.

 

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents(RoSPA) have issued the following guidance for people planning a firework party at home.

1.    Plan your firework display so ideally it finishes before 11pm (the legal cut-off time on Bonfire Night (5 November) is midnight).

2.    Only buy fireworks which carry the CE mark, keep them in a closed box and use them one at a time.

3.    Read and follow the instructions on each firework using a torch if necessary.

4.    Light the firework at arm's length with a taper and stand well back.

5.    Keep naked flames, including cigarettes, away from fireworks.

6.    Never return to a firework once it has been lit.

7.    Don't put fireworks in pockets and never throw them.

8.    Direct any rocket fireworks well away from spectators.

9.    Never use paraffin or petrol on a bonfire.

10. Make sure that the fire is out and surroundings are made safe before leaving.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue service ask that whenever possible people go along to organised firework events, where the fireworks are handled by professionals.

They say that if you do plan to celebrate with your own firework display and/or bonfire, following the simple tips below should help ensure your evening is a success;

  • Plan your firework display to make it 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.
  • Direct any rocket fireworks well away from spectators.
  • Always supervise children with sparklers, never give them to children under 5.
  • Put used sparklers hot end down into a bucket of sand or water.
  • Check for hedgehogs and other wildlife before lighting your bonfire.
  • Never use paraffin or petrol on a bonfire.
  • Don’t build bonfires close to trees, hedges or sheds.
  • Don’t leave bonfires unattended.
  • Make sure that the bonfire is out and surroundings are made safe before leaving.

Northern Powergrid are asking people to keep bonfires away from power lines and electricity substations

Geoff Earl, Northern Powergrid's director of health, safety and environment, said:

"We always recommend going to organised displays in your local community rather than setting off your own fireworks - but if you do – please take a few minutes to check your surroundings first and make sure you're well away from our overhead power lines or substations.

Building bonfires anywhere near the electricity network can be extremely dangerous with power lines on wooden poles carrying voltages of 132,000 volts. Remember electricity can jump gaps - a badly placed bonfire could reduce vital clearance distances."

 

 

 

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