Keep Safe With Fireworks

Council says simple precautions make a difference

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With Halloween and Bonfire Night on the horizon, local Councils have called on people to make safety a top priority.

Cllr Colin Ellar, Hounslow council’s cabinet member for environment, said;“Our trading standards and licensing teams have been out across the borough making sure that shops selling fireworks have the necessary permits to safely stock, display and sell fireworks, but once you take them home, it’s up to you to make sure they’re used with care.

“Simple precautions can make all the difference between a safe, enjoyable event and the potential for damage and serious injury, and I would urge everyone to follow the Fire Brigade’s advice, or visit for more top tips.”

Ealing Council officers and police will be carrying out joint patrols during October and November, taking action against irresponsible traders and anti-social behaviour.

Currently there are no restrictions on the sale of fireworks other than the prohibition of the sale of fireworks to anyone under 18 years. Caps, cracker snaps and party poppers can be sold to anyone under 16 years.

Unlicensed traders are prohibited from selling fireworks to the public EXCEPT FOR:

    November 1, 2012ys
  • Diwali and the preceding three days
  • 15 October to 10 November
  • 26 to 31December

Traders must apply for a licence to the council to supply fireworks all year round.

It is illegal to keep fireworks (except for private use) on premises that have not been registered for this purpose. Individuals can store fireworks for private use for up to 14 days, provided they are kept in a safe place.

When can I use fireworks?

Throwing or setting off fireworks in the street is an offence.

It is an offence for anyone under 18 years of age to possess any large fireworks in a public place. It is an offence for anyone except professionals from possessing display fireworks.

The use of fireworks is prohibited between the hours of 11pm- 7am with some exceptions – on 5 November it is midnight. This is a Metropolitan Police directive not a local authority one.

While many people complain about the noise nuisance caused by fireworks, a nuisance in law needs to be ongoing, and therefore one fireworks event a year would not be considered a breach of the law. However, if there are repeated in incidents of fireworks being let off at the same premises, the Council would consider serving an abatement notice under the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

If you require further information on noise nuisance and fireworks, contact the Pollution Control Team on 020 8583 5555 or email The team provides an out-of-hours service on Friday and Saturday nights between 10pm - 4am in respect of noise nuisance and can be contacted on 020 8583 2222.

October 30, 2012