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29/10/19 14:09

Fireworks action plan launched

Measures set out to reduce negative impact of fireworks.

Restrictions to the use of fireworks on private property across Scotland will be considered by a new review group.

The group will also consider changes to the times at which fireworks can be let off and look at options around the potential introduction of no-fireworks zones.

The Chair and full remit of the action group will be announced shortly.

This is one of the measures outlined in a new Scottish Government fireworks action plan, which also sets out proposals to develop guidance for community groups on how to set up safe fireworks displays.

Community Safety Minister Ash Denham launched the plan following widespread public support for action to reduce the negative impact of fireworks on communities throughout Scotland.

Ms Denham said:

“The results of both our public consultation and national survey demonstrate overwhelming public support for a change in how fireworks are sold and used in Scotland.

“While legislation on the sale of fireworks is reserved to Westminster, we need a full and frank debate on how fireworks are sold and I will continue to press the UK Government on this issue.

“Our fireworks review group will now consider how best to use the powers at our disposal to drive forward action to reduce the damage caused by fireworks misuse.

“We want to ensure that every community is able to enjoy fireworks without fear of their inappropriate use and I look forward to working closely with communities, key partners and the fireworks industry to achieve this.”

Gilly Mendes Ferreira, Scottish SPCA Head of Education and Policy, said:

“For years we have supported tighter restrictions on public use due to the stress and anxiety caused to animals.

“Most calls report animals being injured trying to escape the noise of fireworks, including dogs running onto roads and being hit by oncoming traffic, swans flying into electricity pylons and horses being badly hurt after running through barbed wire fences.

“We will continue to work closely with the Scottish Government to improve animal welfare surrounding the use of fireworks.”

Background

The Scottish Government’s Fireworks Action Plan: Promoting the Safe and Appropriate Use of Fireworks in Scotland

The full remit of action group will be decided shortly. The group will operate for a period of up to nine months and will present its final recommendations to Ministers in Summer 2020.

The Scottish Government’s consultation on fireworks ran for 14 weeks and 16,420 responses were received.

It found that:

- 94% want to see tighter controls on the sale of fireworks

- 93% want to see stronger regulations to ensure animals are not caused unnecessary suffering as a result of fireworks misuse

- 92% feel there should be tighter controls on fireworks use

- 87% would support an outright ban on the sale of fireworks