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Fire service warn of Chinese lantern dangers

Wiltshire Fire Service is warning people about the dangers of Chinese lantern ahead of New Year celebrations.

The lanterns have become increasingly popular worldwide as a means of celebrating special occasions but carry a significant risk of injury of fire if not used wisely.

Chinese lanterns are traditionally launched to celebrate the Chinese New Year Credit: PA Wire

The lanterns are generally made from paper, supported by a wire frame that incorporates a holder at the base for a solid fuel heat source. There have been house fires in the county in recent years caused by Chinese lanterns landing on roofs.

Area Manager John Popowicz said: “With Chinese lanterns, you’re basically throwing a naked flame into the sky with no control over the direction it will take or where it will land.

"In addition, there is no guarantee that the fuel source will be fully extinguished and cooled when the lantern eventually descends, and that presents a real fire hazard.”