FIRE chiefs are urging people to help save lives by not causing delays by starting bonfires.
County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service made the plea ahead of Guy Fawkes Night when the service usually receives an increase in calls to put out bonfires that have been built in dangerous places or are not supervised by adults.
Senior community safety officer at the service, Andrew Allison, said: “Dealing with these types of incident can often delay us from attending real emergencies where there may be lives at risk.
“It is very easy for injuries to happen around bonfires, especially when younger children are involved and they also tend to annoy neighbours due to the smell of the smoke.
“Our advice is – don’t have a bonfire.”
Fire services chiefs are urging people to attend organised displays, but if people do decide to have one, bosses ask: l that they always follow the firework code;
l read the advice on each firework;
l only buy fireworks over the counter from reputable dealers;
l only burn timber on fires, rather than toxic materials;
l supervise the fire at all times;
l keep children away from the fires.