Message is always play safe with fireworks on bonfire night

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The Rotary Club of Newton Stewart are preparing for their annual bonfire night extravaganza, taking place this Sunday, 6th November at Blairmount Park, Newton Stewart. (see page 11)

All the profit is donated to the Club’s current campaign for children and young people in Dumfries and Galloway living with Type 1 Diabetes. Find out more about Insulin Pump Therapy at the event.

When you’re gearing up to mark Bonfire Night, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) is encouraging people to share the Firework Code and sparkler safety advice to prevent nasty burn injuries to young children.

Figures for people who were admitted to hospital in Scotland show that there were nine admissions due to firework injuries in 2014/15, of which four (44 per cent) involved under-18s. Eight of the nine admissions were emergency admissions. Across Great Britain as a whole, there were 138 firework injury hospital admissions in 2014/15.

It is against the law to sell fireworks to under-18s in Britain and it is also illegal to carry fireworks in public if you’re under 18. RoSPA advises that only adults deal with fireworks, including setting up displays and lighting fireworks, and children and young people watch from a safe distance. Special care is also recommended with sparklers. You can see the full Firework Code and sparkler safety advice on RoSPA’s website.

Elizabeth Lumsden, community safety manager at RoSPA Scotland, said: “We want families to have enjoyable celebrations and an important part of this is making sure that events are not only fun but safe. The safest place to enjoy fireworks is at a large public display but if you’ll be having your celebrations at home, be sure to follow the Firework Code.

“Top tips from the code are to plan your display in advance so you’re not rushing things at the last minute and to keep fireworks in a closed box, using them one at time.

“Spectators should stand at a safe distance, so make sure your garden is big enough for the fireworks you want to set off. Only adults should deal with fireworks and remember - don’t go back to a lit firework.