With winter drawing in, it’s time to get the wooly hats out and head to a local bonfire or firework display.
Of course, there will be many taking to the roads at this time, so it’s imperative to take extra care when out and about. To help keep you safe, road safety organisation IAM RoadSmart has put together a hand list of tips to keep in mind this bonfire night.
"Fireworks can be great fun, but they can also bring out the wild side in some people. Keep alert and watch out for unusual behaviour such as kids throwing fireworks into traffic," said IAM RoadSmart’s head of driving and riding standards Richard Gladman. "A bit of planning and a lot of common sense will go a long way in making sure your night goes with a bang and isn’t just a damp squib."
IAM RoadSmart’s Bonfire night tips
What to wear
Dress for the weather. It’s getting colder, and you’ll be standing around for an hour or so in the cold! If you’re wearing welly boots, be sure you change out of these when driving. Take some gloves too if you have some, especially if you’re taking sparklers (make sure you take some cold water to put these out).
Walk if you can
If you’re going to a local firework display, walk if you can. That way you won’t get caught up in the traffic and struggle to find a parking spot. Wear light coloured clothing or some hi-visibility clothing, as motorists may struggle to see you in the dark.
If you are driving or riding, have you planned where you’re going to park? Planning your journey ahead of time will avoid any last-minute rushing to make the show on time.
Don’t get distracted
If you’re travelling by car or motorbike to watch the fireworks, keep your eyes on the road. There will be lots of children out and about, so stay vigilant as they can be unpredictable.
If the fireworks have already started whilst you’re out on the road, do not take your eyes off the road to watch them. Find a safe place to pull over or wait until you get there.
Protect your pets if they get scared of the fireworks. Never leave them in a car near a firework display as they could injure themselves or damage your car. Create a quiet space for them at home, where they can hide and feel safe.
If you’re buying fireworks, ensure you have a spark resistant container with a lid to put them in. Place them securely in the boot, this will remove any temptation for passengers to interfere with them when you are driving.
Remove anything flammable from your vehicle and store it safely in your home.
The law states that you cannot buy more than 50kgs of fireworks. Most insurance companies allow you to transport fireworks, but just check the small print to be certain.