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2010 firework campaign launches with a bang

by Iain Roberts on 6 October, 2010

From Greater Manchester Fire & Rescue Service:

With the Bonfire and Firework season fast approaching, Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) is determined to continue the successful incident reductions of 2009. The successes included criminal damage reduced by 22.7 % and call outs to small fires reduced by an amazing 40.5 %. There was also an 8.9 % reduction in anti-social behavior and arson was 4.4 % lower than the previous year.

This reduction in crime, antisocial behaviour and deliberate fires, equated to a saving of more than £1.3M over the 2009 Halloween and Bonfire Night period.

Cllr Paul Shannon, Chairman of Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority said, “We take very seriously the impact on everyone of the actions of a small minority of people during the Halloween and Bonfire Night period. Working with our partner agencies we are determined to keep reducing both the injuries to the public and hostilities towards our firefighters.

Cllr Shannon continued, “This will improve the experience for everyone – helping them celebrate happily and safely, whilst also reducing the financial impact on the partner agencies and ultimately every resident of Greater Manchester.”

As a member of the Treacle Partnership*, GMFRS continues the work of their ‘Firework Amnesty’ throughout the year and liaising with partners they have collected dangerous and unwanted fireworks from locations throughout the Greater Manchester area.

Tomorrow, Wednesday 6th October at 10 am these fireworks will be dramatically destroyed. (Please see below for location and details of who to contact if you wish to attend).

The fireworks amnesty is just one of the ways GMFRS is working as part of the Treacle Partnership*, to reduce the impact of fireworks, bonfires and associated antisocial behaviour around the Halloween and Bonfire Night periods.

The ‘Treacle’ Partnership is a multi agency, county wide collaboration which has been successfully developed to bring different agencies together to tackle the issues that arise over the Bonfire and Halloween period.

The fireworks amnesty gives the public the facility to dispose of unwanted fireworks safely by calling 0800 555 815. The Fire Service will then collect the fireworks and safely dispose of them, which not only helps the public, but also minimises the potential of fireworks returning to streets or being set off in houses, causing serious injury or damage to property.

With the responsibility for licensing the storage of retail fireworks, every year the Fire and Rescue Service deals with people who store fireworks dangerously.

Deputy County Fire Officer, Jim Owen said, “Sadly every year we see examples of how dangerous fireworks can be if misused, after all they are explosives. We want everyone to enjoy the celebrations safely, by working with our partners we aim to continue to reduce the impact of the small minority of people who act irresponsibly.”

Mr Owen continued, “To help us keep people safe and in response to the public’s call for assistance, anyone with a concern can call the free phone number on 0800 555 815. We will then help by collecting and destroying any fireworks that the public are concerned about. The fireworks may be old, suspicious looking, out of date or bought by mistake. Whatever state they are in we will collect them and destroy them safely.”

Inspector Lin Houldershaw of Greater Manchester Police said: “Halloween and Bonfire Night can be a lot of fun for many people, but it can also be a distressing and intimidating time for some of our residents.

“We don’t want to spoil anyone’s fun but by working with our partners, we want to raise awareness of the consequences of committing antisocial behaviour. This could be a visit by police to an offender’s home or an £80 on the spot fine and a criminal record.

“My advice for a safe and enjoyable Halloween and Bonfire is to respect others, use fireworks responsibly and attend an organised event.”

   3 Comments

3 Responses

  1. Emma Burrows says:

    A Firework Shop in Gatley has appeared. I’m not sure this is a good idea! I guess we shall see if incidences of firework related crime goes up in the next few weeks and will it be put down to coincidence….. Let’s hope whoever has decided to run this operation from these premises holds the Laws and Regulations in the sale of such items with the regard it demands.

  2. iainroberts says:

    We’re checking that it’s legal – if so, it will be having visits from the fire service to ensure it’s following all the safety laws – and it will be shut down if not.

  3. Emma Burrows says:

    Glad you guys are onto it! Thanks for the update.

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