South Tyneside safety experts all set for fireworks crackdown

David Cramond

David Cramond

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Council bosses say they are all set for a crackdown on the sale of illegal fireworks ahead of Bonfire night.

Trading standards officers at South Tyneside Council say they are ready for a traditionally busy period.

On Friday they are launching the annual Darker Nights campaign along with Northumbria Police and the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service.

In a report to the councils licensing committee, which also meets on Friday, South Tyneside’s corporate director of economic regeneration David Cramond said recent years have seen a big drop in the number of illegal fireworks in the area.

He said it is against the law to sell fireworks to anyone under 18 and that shops looking to keep fireworks need to register with the fire service.

Council officers are planning to visit firework-sellers to check they are complying with storage rules and will consider carrying out test purchases - which sees a child try and buy fireworks.

Mr Cramond said: “Allegations of underage sales of fireworks have decreased in recent years, probably due to a combination of fewer premises selling fireworks and the significant amount of advisory and educational work carried out by trading standards and partner agencies.”

Mr Cramond also said trading standards officers would “seek to reinforce the message that individuals who set themselves up in residential areas to sell illegal products such as fireworks, alcohol and cigarettes should not to be tolerated”.

The licensing committee will meet at Jarrow Town Hall at 10am.