The usage of fireworks is not without rules and laws. On the website of the UK government you can find the complete version of the rules and regulations surrounding Fireworks: the law in this blog we dive into the firework law as well.
Who is allowed to set off fireworks?
If you are under the age of 18, you cannot buy ‘adult’ fireworks. Category 2 and 3 fireworks are seen as adult fireworks. You can read more about firework categories in our blog about firework categories. In our blog about firework categories we also talk about category 4 fireworks, this category is only allowed to be used by firework professionals.
When and where are you allowed to set off fireworks?
It is against the law for anyone to set off fireworks between 11 pm and 7 am, except on certain occasions, such as Bonfire night (with the cut-off at midnight), New Year’s Eve, Diwali, and Chinese New Year, where the cut off is 1 am. It may happen that the local rules differ from the ones issued by the government, therefore you can check with your local council for the rules and regulations in your area. According to the law, you may not set off or throw fireworks (including sparklers) in the streets or other public places.
When and where can you buy fireworks?
Licensed firework shops are allowed to sell all year round. Often you will be able to buy fireworks in-store or online from these shops. Other registered firework sellers of fireworks for private use are only allowed to sell fireworks on the following dates: 15th of October to 10th of November, 26th to 31st of December, 3 days before Diwali and Chinese New Year. If you order your fireworks online, you must be aware that they cannot be sent through the post, this also applies to sparklers. Fireworks can be shipped though, this must be done using courier services and the fireworks must be marked as such. Because of their explosives classification, fireworks are also prohibited items on airlines, ferry, and shipping companies. Therefore fireworks can only be shipped on the mainland. Fireworks can be sold and bought any time of year, the retailed must hold a valid license to sell.
Which fireworks are banned in the UK
In the UK there is a noise limit of 120DB on fireworks, which means that fireworks that are louder are not allowed. There are also certain types of fireworks banned in the UK. These include bangers, air bombs, jumping jacks, regardless of whether these are CE marked and approved for sale in other EU countries. Consumer fireworks should always confirm to CE/EU standards and be classified as Category F2 or Category F3 fireworks. The old British Standards (BS) classification is no longer in use.
Most importantly, safety surrounding fireworks. Information surrounding firework safety can be found at our Dynamic Fireworks website, other firework companies, the Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents, and the Health and Safety Executive. Fireworks and sparklers can also be sold to people aged 18 years and older. For anyone under the age of 18, it is illegal to possess fireworks in a public place. It is not a legal requirement to have any kind of training or license to buy consumer fireworks. And there is no such thing as a license or training that entitles a member of the public to buy Category 4 fireworks. These are only available to bonafide professional fireworks companies with all-year insurance and licensed storage.
Selling and using fireworks illegally can be fined up to £5000 and imprisonment for up to 6 months. You can also get an on-the-spot fine of £90.