Measures to crack down on firework yobs unveiled

Measures aimed at cracking down on the misuse of fireworks have been unveiled by the government today.

To tackle the anti-social use of fireworks by teenagers, and the problems of noise and nuisance, the government announced that before Christmas the possession of fireworks by under-18s in public places will be made illegal. There will be fixed penalties of up to £80 for people caught throwing fireworks in the street, and the possession of the largest, most powerful, 'category 4' fireworks will also be outlawed for all members of the public.

The government has said that it will also draft regulations before the end of the year to enshrine in law the firework industry's current voluntary ban on airbombs.

The government has already begun preliminary consultations on implementing the rest of the Fireworks Act and will publish draft regulations in the New Year to introduce a national curfew banning the use of fireworks during anti-social hours. A new licensing system for the sale of fireworks to ensure local authorities have the power to refuse and revoke licenses if retailers act inappropriately will also be introduced.

Trade Secretary Patricia Hewitt said: "In the right place and the right time fireworks are a real source of pleasure and we want families to enjoy the safe use of fireworks in their gardens and in public displays.

"But people across the UK are sick of being terrorised by irresponsible use of fireworks. We want to drive the fireworks thugs off the street and will use the full force of law to tackle those who are making the lives of others a misery in this way.

The full raft of measures should be in place by July 2004 – in advance of next year's fireworks season.


Related UK National News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

01 November 2013
Firefighters To Strike Tonight
Fresh industrial action has been announced by firefighters in England and Wales in an ongoing dispute over pension age. Fire Brigade Union members will stage a walk out between 18:30 and 23:00 tonight and again on Monday. Firefighters last took strike action in October, stage two walks.
13 June 2003
Accidents at firework displays cut by a quarter
Firework accidents were down by a quarter last year, and injuries to teenagers fell even further, by a third, Consumer Minister Melanie Johnson announced today.
02 November 2015
Three 12-Year-Old Boys Seriously Injured By Firework
An investigation has been launched after three 12-year-old boys were injured by a firework in St Helens on Friday, 30 October. One of the boys suffered minor burns to his hands and face, another substantial burns to his stomach and face and the third substantial burns to his hand and a fractured hand. All were treated in hospital, where two remain.
23 April 2004
Curfew plans set to criminalise firework use after 11pm
The government has continued its crusade against so-called anti-social behaviour today, by announcing plans for an 11pm curfew on the use of fireworks which, if breached, could see offenders fined £5,000 or jailed for up to six months.
26 September 2008
Funding Boost Of £455m For Equal Pay Claims
Funding of £455m will be awarded to councils in England to allow back payments relating to thousands of equal pay claims from women workers. In a move to speed up long-term commitments to achieving equal pay for all council workers, local government minister John Healey gave the go-ahead to 34 councils to raise the money through capitlisation.