Firework organisers warned not to cut corners

ORGANISERS of firework displays in Exmouth are being urged not to cut corners by the safety watchdog in the run-up to bonfire night.

ORGANISERS of firework displays in Exmouth are being urged not to cut corners by the safety watchdog in the run-up to bonfire night.

Up to 1,000 people are injured every year by fireworks, and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is concerned that there may be more accidents if organisers ignore safety procedures to reduce costs.

Major displays, involving large numbers of spectators, can cost thousands of pounds for the fireworks alone and Allen Webb, Principal Inspector in HSE's Explosives Inspectorate, said:

"Exmouth's firework displays should be an enjoyable and spectacular occasions, but they obviously need some responsible planning.


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"We provide simple and clear advice to help displays go off both safely, and with a bang!

"If you're holding a firework display you won't need to plan it in the same level of detail as a major display. But you still need to plan it responsibly, without cutting corners over safety.

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"That means thinking about who will light the display, whether the site is large enough and free from overhead obstructions, and what you'd do if something went wrong. It may be common sense, but accidents often happen if people don't think enough in advance about the risks."

HSE has issued five safety tips for the day of a fireworks display

* Recheck the site, weather conditions and wind direction

* Don't let the public into the firing zone or area where the fireworks fall

* Discourage spectators from bringing alcohol onto the site

* Don't let spectators bring their own fireworks onto the site

* Never attempt to relight fireworks that have failed to go off.

HSE is also advising organisers to consider obtaining public liability insurance, although it is not required by law.

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