Fireworks warning to football fans after smoke bomb let off by Middlesbrough fan at Wigan

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POLICE have warned football fans that it is an offence to take fireworks into a stadium after an incident last weekend.

Cleveland Police have issued the warning after a Middlesbrough fan let off a smoke bomb at last week’s match at Wigan, and say similar incidents will not be tolerated ahead of Saturday’s game with Sheffield Wednesday at the Riverside Stadium.

Middlesbrough FC and Cleveland Police have a strict zero tolerance policy towards fireworks, flares and smoke bombs and any fans caught with them risk prosecution and banning orders.

Superintendent Mark Thornton, Cleveland Police’s Match Commander for the game, said: “We have a close partnership with Middlesbrough FC and are taking a zero tolerance approach to anyone who attempts to take flares, fireworks or smoke bombs into the stadium.

“Fans need to consider the safety of themselves and others around them and not put people in danger by taking these items to the match.

“You have been warned - you will be dealt with robustly if you are found to be in possession of these items.”

Boro Safety Officer Chris Patzelt said the growing trend for fans to bring flares and fireworks to football matches is something they are determined to stamp out.

“We are fortunate that there was only one occurrence at the Riverside last season when a Charlton supporter was arrested after being caught in possession of a pyrotechnic,” he added.