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MP’s survey supports ban on private use of fireworks

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A survey conducted by Stirling MP Alyn Smith has uncovered that a substantial majority of constituents support additional restrictions on the private use of fireworks.

The survey, which had almost 1,000 respondents, found that 89.2% of respondents would support a ban, with fireworks only being permitted to properly regulated public displays. Results also showed that 87% considered fireworks to be a danger to animals.

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The survey supports the Scottish Government’s findings from its survey regarding the public opinion of fireworks, with 87% of its respondents also supporting a ban on private use.

man with fireworks
Photo by Rakicevic Nenad on Pexels.com

Earlier this month the Scottish Government received a final report of recommendations around increased restrictions on the use of fireworks. The report was produced by an expert group consisting of individuals from a variety of organisations, including Veterans Scotland, the British Firework Association and the SSPCA.

The expert group put forward several recommendations, including:

  • the introduction of mandatory conditions when fireworks are purchased from retailers
  • restricting the times of day fireworks can be sold and volume of fireworks that can be purchased at any one time
  • restricting the days and times fireworks can be set off
  • the introduction of no firework areas or zones
  • the creation of a proxy purchasing offence to prevent adults from buying fireworks on behalf of those under the age of 18

Commenting on its recommendations, the chair of the expert group Alasdair Hay, CBE QFSM said that the group believed “step change is needed in how fireworks are accessed and used by the general public”.

However Hay stressed: “This is not to prevent adults using fireworks sensibly and safely – rather, to ensure all safety requirements are fully understood and adhered to, and the impact on others has been fully considered.”

Smith will use the findings from this survey to inform representations he makes to the Scottish Government on firework controls.

Commenting, Alyn Smith MP said he was grateful to “the hundreds of people who took the time to respond to my survey on fireworks”, adding that “a staggering number of local people have told me through this survey that they consider fireworks to be a nuisance and a danger”.

Smith further added:

“Like the Scottish Government, I welcome the report from the expert review group, calling for tighter controls of fireworks, as far as it goes. There are a number of recommendations that are worth giving serious consideration to, such as the creation of no-fireworks zones, and I’m interested to understand more about how this could help protect my constituents from the nuisance that fireworks can cause.

“Many people let off fireworks in a safe and considerate way, but it can’t be denied that the nuisance they seem to cause can often be widespread.

“I will write to the Scottish Government, sharing the results of this survey, as ministers consider how best to regulate the private use of fireworks in Scotland.”

Feature image Credit: European Parliament

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