Make it sparkle and flare, not emergency care, this Bonfire Night

Date: 02 November 2016

Pictured are Lizi Ingle from Families Norwich North Norfolk, Student Associate Ambulance Practitioner Adrian Appleby, and Lizi’s children Josiah and Thea

We are urging people to take extra care and keep safe when celebrating with fireworks and bonfires this Bonfire Night.

Every year, we are called to patients with firework or bonfire-related injuries and we want to help people enjoy their evenings with the sound of a bang and not the sound of sirens.

And we’ve teamed up with Families Norwich North Norfolk, a Norfolk-based online community to help spread the safety message.

Try and attend a professionally-organised display or, if you are planning to have you own event, here are our tips:

  • Plan your firework display to make it safe and enjoyable
  • Keep fireworks in a closed box and use them one at a time
  • Read and follow the instructions on each firework, using a torch if necessary
  • Keep naked flames, including cigarettes, away from fireworks
  • Never return to a firework once it has been lit
  • Don't put fireworks in pockets and never throw them
  • Direct any rocket fireworks well away from spectators
  • Never use paraffin, petrol or any accelerant on a bonfire to get it going.
  • Always supervise children when using sparklers

Lizi Ingle, of Families Norwich North Norfolk, said: “We wanted to get across some really important messages about safety at this time of year, and have provided our online community with a comprehensive briefing from all of the emergency services.

“It was great to meet Adrian and learn more about what goes behind a 999 response to someone who needs it – hopefully, it people heed all of the safety information out there, the risk of accidents can be really reduced.”

We’re also taking this opportunity to remind people how to deal with burns should it be needed:

Stop the burning process as soon as possible. This may mean removing the person from the area, dousing flames with water or smothering flames with a blanket. Do not put yourself at risk of getting burnt as well.

Remove any clothing or jewellery near the burnt area of skin. However, don't try to remove anything that is stuck to the burnt skin because this could cause more damage

Cool the burn with cool or lukewarm water for 10 to 30 minutes, ideally within 20 minutes of the injury occurring. Never use ice, iced water or any creams or greasy substances such as butter.

Keep yourself or the person warm. Use a blanket or layers of clothing, but avoid putting them on the injured area. Keeping warm will prevent hypothermia, where a person's body temperature drops below 35ºC (95ºF). This is a risk if you are cooling a large burnt area, particularly in young children and elderly people.

Cover the burn with cling film. Put the cling film in a layer over the burn, rather than wrapping it around a limb. A clean clear plastic bag can be used for burns on your hand.

Treat the pain from a burn with paracetamol or ibuprofen. Always check the manufacturer's instructions when using over-the-counter (OTC) medication. Children under 16 years of age should not be given aspirin.

If you are concerned seek medical advice by calling 111 or in emergencies call 999.


Pictured are Lizi Ingle from Families Norwich North Norfolk, Student Associate Ambulance Practitioner Adrian Appleby, and Lizi’s children Josiah and Thea.

  • Summary:

    We are urging people to take extra care and keep safe when celebrating with fireworks and bonfires this Bonfire Night.