Firework Safety

“I wouldn’t want another family to have to go through what we have. When I think how relatively minor her burns are, and how much pain she has been through, it’s terrifying.” Maisie’s mother

Fireworks buying guide

Using the wrong category of fireworks for the space in your garden is dangerous.

With the cost of living crisis we all need to save money. But many sellers of cheap fireworks don’t always make it clear what category you’re buying. And online marketplaces don’t have to check the safety of what they sell.

Use our guide to help you buy fireworks safely this Diwali and Bonfire Night.

Remember, if you can afford it, organised displays are safer.

Choose where to buy

  • Look out for a member of the British Fireworks Association (BFA). All the fireworks they sell have been tested, so you can be sure they meet the latest UK safety standards.
  • If you can, go to reputable retailers and avoid pop-up shops.
  • When buying online, look for companies who offer helpful advice about what category of firework to buy for your garden. If the seller doesn’t list fireworks categories, find one who does.
  • Take care buying from online marketplaces. Remember, online marketplaces are not responsible for the safety of the products they sell.
  • Avoid buying fireworks via posts in your social media.

Know your categories

Fireworks are split into four different categories:

  • Category 1 are indoor fireworks.
  • Category 2 fireworks are suited to average-sized family back gardens.
  • Category 3 fireworks need a minimum safety distance of 25 metres – far bigger than the average family back garden! While non-professionals can buy them, category 3 fireworks are really designed for large displays.
  • Category 4 are for professional use only.

Don’t get caught out by a dodgy dealer trying to sell you fireworks that are too big for your garden!

Other tips for buying safely

  • Did you know that fireworks should be tested against safety standards to make sure they aren’t dangerous? Don’t assume that, just because someone can sell you something, it must be safe!
  • Only buy fireworks marked with safety standards (BS-EN 15947-2015).

More information on firework safety

Read our top tips for a safe firework display at home and start teaching young children how to stay safe.

Hear what can go wrong and find out what to do in an emergency, including how to react if clothes catch fire and first aid for burns.

Download and share a free firework safety leaflet.

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