Derry parents have been urged to remind their kids about the dangers of fireworks.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) say around 70% of all people injured at Halloween are children and while firework related injuries are at their lowest since records began, children should be aware of the firework safety code.
Ita McErlean, RoSPA s home safety manager in Northern Ireland, said: “A reduction in the number of firework injuries around Halloween is a positive step, but with seven in every ten injuries affecting a child, we must remain vigilant in getting people to follow the firework code.
“Fireworks are not toys but explosives can scar someone for life, and we want parents and carers to make sure young people know that.
“Organised events are by far the safest place to enjoy a firework display, but if you can’t get to one, remember to put safety first and follow the firework code so Halloween is fun and not a fright for the wrong reasons.”
RoSPAs fireworks website - www.saferfireworks.com - has everything you need to know about planning a safe fireworks display including:
· Plan your fireworks 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
· Light the firework at arm’s length with a taper and stand well back
· 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 or petrol on a bonfire
· Make sure that the fire is out and surroundings are made safe before leaving.
Figures for 2012 show that injuries were mainly to the hand, face or eyes, and five of the eight where the location was reported happened at a family or private party.
Five victims were treated by Belfast HSC Trust, five visited Southern HSC Trust, three at Western HSC Trust and one at Northern HSC Trust.