Oxford ,

Firework safety advice – be safe, not sorry!

If you're planning on hosting a fireworks party, be safe, not sorry and keep it free from accidents by following the fireworks code.

As Bonfire Night approaches, Oxfordshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service is reminding people that the safest way to celebrate is to attend a large professionally organised public event such as one the following, all taking place on 5 November: 

  • Bicester Round Table Firework Display and Bonfire at Pingle Field, Bicester
  • Oxford Round Table's 49th Annual Charity Fireworks Display at South Park, Headington Hill, Oxford
  • Standlake Cokethorpe Sea Scouts annual Firework Spectacular at Standlake Village Hall, Standlake.

Chris Barber, Station Manager at Oxfordshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service said: “Organised displays are bigger, better, cheaper and far safer than holding your own fireworks party. They also benefit a lot of good local charities and causes. However, if you are planning to use fireworks or organise a bonfire at home, please follow the Fireworks Code and our bonfire safety checklist to ensure you have a safe as well as fun bonfire evening.”



Remember to follow the Fireworks Code

  • Only buy fireworks marked BS 7114
  • Save the alcohol until after you have set off the fireworks
  • Keep fireworks in a closed box. Never put fireworks in your pocket or throw them
  • Follow the instructions on each firework
  • Light them at arm’s length, using a taper
  • Stand well back
  • Never go near a firework that has been lit. Even if it hasn’t gone off, it could still explode
  • Always supervise children around fireworks
  • Light sparklers one at a time and wear gloves
  • Never give sparklers to a child under five.

Bonfire Safety Checklist

  • Bonfire Night parties wouldn’t be the same without a bonfire but to stay safe, follow these safety tips
  • Make one person responsible for the bonfire. Only allow that person and designated helpers into the bonfire area
  • Keep your bonfire at least 18 metres (60ft) away from houses, trees, hedges, fences or sheds.
  • Only burn clean dry timber
  • Before lighting the fire check its construction carefully to make sure that it is stable and check for animals, especially hedgehogs
  • Use domestic firelighters to light your bonfire
  • Do not use petrol, paraffin, diesel or other flammable liquids to light your bonfire
  • Keep some buckets of water nearby
  • Never burn aerosols, batteries, bottles, foam-filled furniture, tins of paint or tyres.

Councillor Rodney Rose, Oxfordshire County Council's cabinet member for Fire & Rescue, said: "If you are in any doubt about the suitability of your home for a firework display or are unsure about how to set them off safely, then I would urge you to follow the advice of Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service and attend an organised public display. We’re lucky in Oxfordshire to have many great public displays taking place on our doorstep, all across the county.”

This advice is part of 365alive, Oxfordshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service’s vision to work every day to save and improve the lives of people across Oxfordshire. For more information, visit www.365alive.co.uk .