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Ambulance Service Issues Bonfire Night Safety Reminder

02 November 2016

Families are being urged to take precautions to make sure they have a safe Bonfire Night and enjoy the annual tradition which remembers when Guy Fawkes plotted to blow up the Houses of Parliament and failed in 1605.

Every year the ambulance service responds to a number of patients who have firework and bonfire-related injuries, and this year will be no exception.
Ian Walton, Deputy Director of Operations at Yorkshire Ambulance Service, said: “Over the next few days our staff will treat a number of patients, both children and adults, with injuries ranging from minor burns to more serious, life-threatening conditions.

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

“We strongly recommend that people attend a professionally-organised public display but if you are planning to host your own event, please make safety your main priority to ensure everyone has a good time without getting hurt.”

In the event of an accident with fireworks or fires you need to act quickly:

  • If the patient is alight, extinguish any flames by rolling them on the ground.
  • Use cold water (ideally cold running water) 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) has issued their top ten safety tips:

  1. Use a metal box with a lid to store fireworks during your display at home.
  2. Use torches to check instructions and tapers to light fireworks.
  3. Keep a bucket of water ready for emergencies.
  4. Make sure the fireworks bought are suitable for home use, the right size for a garden and are marked with the British Standard number BS 7114.
  5. Sparklers should be lit by an adult and used in an open, but not windy space.
  6. Wear gloves while using sparklers.
  7. Check bonfires for hiding pets or wild animals before lighting them.
  8. Keep dogs and cats inside, close windows and curtains to reduce noise.
  9. Use a rigid, non-flammable surface for flat bottomed fireworks.
  10. Stand well back from the fire and fireworks.

To read the full guide and advice available from ROSPA please use the following link:


Produced By: Corporate Communications Department