Better regulations are needed for fireworks

Motherwell and Wishaw MP Marion Fellows has called on the UK Government to regulate the sale of fireworks following numerous complaints about public safety, animal welfare and demand on emergency services.

05-11-2018. Picture Michael Gillen. FALKIRK. Callendar Park. Falkirk Fireworks display 2018.

In a letter to Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark, Mrs Fellows said that people wishing to buy fireworks should have to apply for permission.

She believes “additional red-tape would ensure that only those who pre-planned purchasing fireworks and were prepared to go to the effort of applying to purchase them would access them”.

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The MP said that some people’s pets have been “traumatised” and “require medication” while emergency services experienced greater demand to tackle anti-social behaviour, fight fires and treat injuries.

Mrs Fellows said: “First of all, our emergency services deserve our thanks for the amazing work they have been doing to reduce harm to public.

“Every year the community expresses its concerns about the irresponsible use of fireworks and their impact on public safety, animal welfare and emergency services. There has to be greater regulation while still allowing people to enjoy them.

“Instead of allowing people to purchase fireworks unrestricted, there should be a license system where people will have to go to the effort of obtaining them.

“This will drastically reduce the number of fireworks for personal use and encourage groups to responsibly organise their own displays for celebrations and also encourage people to attend displays organised by their local authorities.

“We can’t continue to have a system that puts people at risk and that the means to take part in serious anti-social behaviour go unchecked.”

Bonfire night saw firefighters across Scotland deal with more than 330 bonfires as operations control handled more than 723 calls from members of the public on their busiest night of the year.

Sadly there was also several attacks on crews, but thankfully no firefighters were seriously injured.

Denise Christie, national secretary for the Fire Brigades Union in Scotland, condemned the attacks.

She said: ““It’s disgraceful that anyone would attack firefighters, these are professionals who are committed to keeping the communities of Scotland safe under very difficult circumstances.”