Falkirk fireworks season mission launched

Police and fire services are linking up with Falkirk Council for the initiative
Police and fire services are linking up with Falkirk Council for the initiative

Revellers have been reminded to stay safe when attending an event for this year’s bonfire night and not to misuse fireworks.

Police and fire brigade officers joined forces with Falkirk Council this week to launch the fifth annual Operation Alamo, which aims to clamp down on anti-social behaviour in the week leading up to bonfire night.

Although stressing that they wish members of the public to enjoy themselves, the authorities are also keen to remind people of their responsibilities to others, and that fireworks - and bonfires - can be dangerous if not handled correctly.

Recent weeks have already seen a rise in illegal bonfires being set alight.

Chief Superintendent Davie Flynn, head of communities policing at Central Scotland Police, said: “We are not trying to stop anybody’s fun, but we do want people to enjoy bonfire night in a safe manner without impacting on the quality of other people’s lives.

“Operation Alamo is now in its fifth year and it is a successful way for us and our partners to work together to tackle issues surrounding the anti-social use of fireworks and bonfires.

“However, since the beginning of October we have already received an increase in reports of small fires being set and this is completely reckless.

“This will not be tolerated and anybody behaving in an anti-social manner – either towards firefighters who are putting out bonfires, or council staff who are dismantling them – will be dealt with firmly.

“It is not acceptable for people to be verbally or physically abused as they carry out responsibilities which keep communities safe.”

Visits to local retailers will also be carried out by trading standards officials to ensure that fireworks legislation is followed.

Craig R. Martin, community safety convener at Falkirk Council, said: ““We want everyone to have a safe and fun bonfire night but there can be many anti-social problems associated with this in the run up to the event.

“We urge everyone to attend properly organised displays and to ensure younger children do not have access to fireworks unsupervised.

“Our trading standards team will be visiting retailers to ensure that they are complying with the law when it comes to the sale of fireworks and we will work with the police and fire and rescue service to ensure that any anti-social behaviour is dealt with appropriately.”