Nottinghamshire residents who are aware of local traders selling fireworks to children are being encouraged to report their concerns to the County Council’s Trading Standards team on the run-up to Bonfire Night on Monday 5 November.
Licensed traders cannot sell fireworks to people under 18 and traders who breach this restriction can be fined up to £5,000.
Likewise, caps, cracker snaps, novelty matches, party poppers, serpents and throwdowns cannot be sold to anyone aged under 16 years of age.
Fireworks can only be purchased legally from a licensed or registered retailer who must meet strict requirements regarding their safe storage.
Trading standards officers will be carrying out inspections of registered premises over the next two weeks to ensure that license holders are storing their fireworks appropriately and have taken all of the appropriate measures to prevent a fire or explosion.
Registered premises can only sell fireworks from 15 October to 10 November, from 26 to 31 December, three days before and on Diwali, and three days before and on the first day of the Chinese New Year. Only a few premises in the county are able to sell fireworks all year round.
Retail boxes of fireworks must not be split and sold separately and certain fireworks such as display fireworks, mini rockets and bangers are banned for sale to the general public.
In addition, all licensed or registered retailers must operate from a fixed premise, so any fireworks being sold from market stalls, car boot sales or other temporary sales locations are illegal.
Councillor Mick Murphy, Chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Community Safety Committee, said: “Although we are carrying out inspections of county shops to ensure they are selling and storing fireworks correctly, we do urge local people to come forward if they know of traders are flouting the sale restrictions on fireworks.
“These restrictions are in place to protect the public and reduce the chance of accidents so it is important that people do not turn a blind eye on a trader who oversteps the law.
“We will act swiftly and clamp down on unscrupulous people found to be selling or storing fireworks illegally.”
Residents with any information on anyone breaching firework requirements should call Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 08454 04 05 06.