Calls for crackdown on 'outrageous' fireworks noise around Bonfire Night

Councillor Gill Cruise said she enjoyed fireworks, but said some are now too loud to tolerate.
Councillor Gill Cruise said she enjoyed fireworks, but said some are now too loud to tolerate.

The volume of some firework displays has reached "outrageous" levels, according to a Conservative councillor.

Gill Cruise, who represents Horbury and South Ossett on Wakefield Council, is calling for a legal limit on the noise emitted by fireworks, because of the fright they cause household pets and the elderly.

Coun Cruise said that fireworks were being used to indicate drugs were being sold, in some cases.

Coun Cruise said that fireworks were being used to indicate drugs were being sold, in some cases.

Coun Cruise said she enjoyed displays around Bonfire Night, but added that fireworks were increasingly being used as weapons and to notify people that drugs are available.

A motion she presented on the issue to a full council meeting on Wednesday received cross party support.

Coun Cruise said: "I quite enjoy fireworks. They are supposed to fill the sky with pretty colours.

"But they're not supposed to almost give you a heart attack with the loudness and frequency of them, or to reduce animals to quivering wrecks.

"It's not in my nature to legislate down to the line, but we need to take reasonable action on this."

Coun Cruise showed an RSPCA picture of a horse which allegedly ran itself to death in its own paddock after being spooked by fireworks, which she said cause noise between 140 and 150 decibels.

Industrial workers are legally required to wear ear protectors when around noises of 90 decibels or higher.

Wakefield Council will write to the government asking them to consider legislating, and Labour members indicated that its Bonfire Night events are likely to feature quieter fireworks in future.

Coun Collins, who represents South Elmsall and South Kirkby said: "I don't want to stand here and be called a fun sponge by some of my constituents who really do love fireworks.

But I do think think this motion deals with both sides. We're not saying we should ban them which I know some of my constituents do believe in, but I know others really like to go and see them."

Sainsbury's became the first UK supermarket to stop selling fireworks in the run up to Guy Fawkes Night this year.

Local Democracy Reporting Service