A warning has gone out to families in Nottingham ahead of Bonfire Night to ensure that everyone enjoys fireworks safely.

Nottingham City Council’s Trading Standards team has put together a checklist for the annual celebrations to remind people that fireworks can be dangerous, particularly if stored incorrectly, get damp or are too powerful for the garden they are being used in.

Top safety tips include:

  • Only buy fireworks from reputable and licensed traders – the legal minimum age to buy is 18
  • Check for a CE/UKCA mark on the box, which indicates essential safety requirements
  • Never buy fireworks from car boot sales, door-to-door sellers, market stalls or private sales on social media
  • Keep fireworks in a closed metal box and always ensure that they are suitable for the size of garden
  • Light them at arm’s length using a taper and stand well back as some may require a 25-meter safety distance
  • Keep naked flames, including cigarettes, away from fireworks at all times – never drink alcohol while lighting a bonfire or setting off fireworks
  • Do not put fireworks in pockets or throw them, return to one which hasn’t gone off or throw any used or unused fireworks on to a bonfire
  • Under-fives should not be given sparklers, while older children must wear gloves and be supervised by an adult
  • Keep pets indoors and, as a consideration for others, notify neighbours before setting off fireworks

Emma Boulton, Principal Trading Standards Officer at Nottingham City Council, said: “We want everyone to have fun this Bonfire Night but the most important thing is to stay safe. Unfortunately, the Council was unable to host an event at the Forest Recreation Ground this year and we understand families and friends may well choose to enjoy the evening at home instead.

“Buying fireworks from reputable retailers and seeking advice on their suitability is crucial. The inclusion of safety standards and guidelines on each label or package, along with clear instructions on how to use them, adds an extra layer of protection.

“The advice to consider the space available and where debris might fall is particularly important in preventing accidents and injuries. Ensuring people are at a safe distance further contributes to a secure environment during the festivities. I hope everyone stays safe and has a wonderful time.”

It is illegal for shops to sell fireworks to under-18s. Anyone who suspects that a retailer is selling fireworks to children can report it to the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0808 223 1133.