Taking an online course before getting a fireworks license

Taking an online course before getting a fireworks license

The Bill would require people to take a basic online course before they can get a licence to buy and use CAT F2 and F3 fireworks. If you agree with this proposal, rate it up (👍), if you disagree, rate it down (👎). Please tell us why you agree or disagree using the comment boxes below.


Waste of time and money

People / Groups should have proper training when handling fireworks

It’s a waste of time, people won’t pay attention too it and will waste money on it then think they know it all potentially becoming more dangerous

I have seen fireworks used dangerously. At least it makes people have to stop and think about using them.

Fireworks are dangerous in the wrong hands, they have been used as weapons. Taking a course would stop them falling into the wron hands

This is beyond ridiculous!

Current laws are sufficient and just require enforcement

I have seen dangerous use of fireworks and it is scary. This proposal would at least make people stop and think before usage.

Do I need an online course to buy a Gas BBQ? Hmmnn gas....explosive. Do I need an online course to buy Parachute Flares for my boat? What load of tosh !

A licence can be revoked if conditions are not met. If for example the event is not advertised in order for the necessary coping strategies to be put in place.

It would go some way to controlling who buys them, personally I would stop selling them

Nice idea, but I doubt it would make much difference to the sort of person who missuses fireworks

Yes. Definitely. Fireworks are explosives not for the use by amateurs

It would enable people to plan ahead

Yes agree. They are explosives after all

An online course is not enough. Fireworks shoukd not be available to members of the public.

people need proper training, there is no way of knowing who has actually undertaken the training if its on line.

This would help increase awareness of the harm they cause and deter casual use of powerful fireworks

Promotes responsible use

This is hardly specialist training and a waste of time and money, will you remember what a 10min course said 5 years ago

Responsible users will pay to be within the law. 'Problem' users or mis-users will ignore this requirement and buy from England or illegally via the postal service from the EU. Net effect of this proposal? zero. A really badly thought out proposal. A licencing regime for dog owners, who's animals are the cause of most noise complaints and far more hospitalisations than from fireworks, should take priority.

It would help, but depends on how hard the course is. I think it would still be too easy to get your hands on them

These type of fireworks are designed to be suitable for use without training.

Not cost effective and no point

Stupid idea! Any handler should be properly trained under professional in person guidance using actual pyrotechnics. This is not a cooking class, these are dangerous explosives!!

This is a bonus for people who want to use fireworks privately and responsibly

Definately should be trained on how to use them

Good idea if we really must continue to allow fireworks.

since the Government is not minded to ban fireworks altogether, something that might make them safer is to be welcomed

a course should be mandatory for anyone who is genuinely wanting to use fireworks.

If fireworks are to continue then knowing how to use them properly is essential

I believe that too many people take risks with fireworks and don't understand the consequences.

This is restriction by the back door. It would make even small displays significantly harder to organise.

But still open to misuse by others to apply for their friends

This isnt good enough, competency cannot br properly assessed. The whole point is to stop inappropriate use, printing off a certificate then doing the same as usual, does not solve any of the issues with firework use.

They are dangerous and often used incorrectly

those who disregard the rules will take no notice of training requirements. further i don't believe an on-line course is enough.

I don't think that watching a video/completing a questionnaire online is an indicator of competency. This is also unfair for responsible people who can't get online. Perhaps public bodies such as fire brigades can more accurately determine competency.

only would work if there was proof that an online course had been done - anyone could say they've done it

General public should not be allowed to carry explosives in any setting

The people who act irresponsibly will just ignore

Forget the online courses because they are far too easy to pass as anyone who has done a few knows fine well. (Ask a teenager.) Fireworks should not be on general sale to the public and only displays put on by professionally qualified organisers should be allowed. Personally I'm fed up with fireworks being set off every day and night between October and February.

I agree with being licensed but online opens it up to abuse. It should be in person. Proof of who you are should be shown.

Seriously - is this a joke? Do you honestly think an online course will solve any of the issues in the world? That would be a complete cop-out like so many other ideas bandied about right now. Anybody could be sitting that course - like all online training - most people get one person in their department to go through it then they do it for everybody!

Responsible people will to stay within the law. Those behaving anti socially will ignore and continue with already illegal methods of obtaining fireworks,

Only for CAT F3, not CAT F2

Seems a step in the right direction.

An online course has no way of testing the applicant has the required knowledge

Just don’t sell them to the public

In principle, I recognise the value of this. However, I am not convinced it would serve to have a direct impact on reducing the negative impact/ dangers associated with the misuse of fireworks. Those determined to obtain them would find a way of doing so.

Anyone using explosives should be trained in this, not some idiots just setting them off for fun and throwing them at people, animals, cars, houses

A firework is an explosive and its use should be limited to appropriate people

The more roadblocks to stop animal abuse or harm, the better.

Yes it makes sense tbh too many idiots

Any explosives should only be given to those who have knowledge on how they work and the damage they can cause.

I agree in theory that the online course would help, but in practice only those people who are responsible would take it.

This WILL NOT work, e.g. our village neighbours do not assess the conditions for lighting these dangerous explosives. They light them when they’re damp and they re-direct into peoples gardens and worse still into people !! They do what they want when they want and blow the consequence's. A complete BAN to sell fireworks to general public. Let’s help keep animals safe and start mending our FRAGILE WORLD !!!

Too many teenagers are using them at inappropriate times.

Those who use anti socially won't take any notice

Too easy to do an online course and opportunity to misuse

Only partially agree with this. An online course is not enough. A fully paid for in person course should be the absolute minimum requirement.

On online course is NOT sufficient protection. A professional face to face practical course of suitable duration is the only way truly instil the safety issues surrounding fireworks. After all, these are explosives with pretty side effects, and you don’t get an explosives licence online

I dont think this is enough, we all know the basic rules. it wont stop anti-social use by irresponsible people youngsters or otherwise.

Good idea, specially if organised displays only

People should have appropriate training before handling explosives. This doesn’t go far enough.

Waste of time and money. No way to police this.

I don't think this would work, so I don't think it's worth doing. It might be helpful to add something to schools to show to kids annually around fireworks night so they grow up with a repetitive message around safety when using fireworks and also impact on livestock, wildlife, domestic pets, vets with ptsd, etc.

Because it’s the responsible action to take. Of course it won’t stop the idiots who think they know best. Just ban fireworks completely.

This would not deter antisocial users.

Not sure on this. Suppose any training might help. Is it sufficient? Would people remember? Would prefer organised events with practically trained operatives.

It won’t stop people using fireworks irresponsibly. It’s better than nothing, but not enough. Fireworks should be restricted to public displays by trained operators.

It will encourage safe and considerate use

I don't see how this will make a big difference as people could do the course and still be irresponsible

Fireworks can be exceedingly dangerous, I believe there should be an outright ban for domestic use

Anyone handling pyrotechnics, which is what fireworks are, should be properly trained. However, I don’t agree that it should be a basic on-line course. There is too much room for fraud. An individual should turn up in person and as with a gun licence or driving licence they should have photo identification after they’ve taken their course and been through vetting. A course alone is not enough and it should not be online only as that is a cop out.

This will work for responsible people who generally do have more awareness of antisocial behaviour towards animals and people. However for the people who really don't give two hoots a course will not work. They will continue to behave in an antisocial manner regardless of completing the course. Law enforcement is what is required and fines . That is the only way the majority will take note of the rules.

Thus will make no difference to people who buy fireworks and use them antisocially

It might make people stop and think, but the effect would probably be quite small.

This should mean a lower rate of injury and distress

People generally unaware of dangers and antisocial nature of fireworks

Would provide users with greater understanding of safety and social issues

This would make obtaining a licence too easy. Too many undesirable people would end up with licences.

A basic online course is not enough!

It would make people accountable.

Would make people liable and prosecuteable


Setting off large fireworks is a dangerous business and can cause damage to the person controlling the fireworks as well as to others.

Highly sensible, particularly when there is a bonfire associated with a display.

Why wouldn’t you need training when dealing with explosives?

Ridiculous! You don't know the person taking the course and for what reason.

The Police cannot be trusted

Any training must be face to face to prevent abuse

Fireworks present a hazard to the user & those in their environment. Training/awareness-raising as a prerequisite for purchase & usage offers an opportunity to mitigate against potential harms.

Just ban them completely

it might deter people buying fireworks. I'm not sure people will adhere to the training however so it may have limited impact.

The major impact of the sale of fireworks on the general public is not safe use but the haphazard and random use of fireworks. While the requirement to take a basic course would provide a limit on buying fireworks, it would not stop fireworks being passed on to others. We have an age limit for the purchase of alcohol but it does not stop youngsters getting their hands on booze.

The sale of fireworks to the public should be banned ALTOGETHER. online courses are ridiculous .... easy to forge and the result means nothing .... the delinquent use will then continue regardless

It’s only sensible when handling explosives whuch should then only be used n an organised display.

Much stronger control (than an online course) is needed.

Definitely agree - training in the use of explosives must be an essential feature

Online courses have limited use value. Any such education and training needs to be face-to-face and practice based. You wouldn't train a firefighter on a computer would you? In any case I am totally opposed to fireworks. I'd like to see them banned altogether.

I believe fireworks should be restricted because of the distress to people and animals. People with PTSD are badly affected by noises and flash backs. Animals do not understand. A recent survey has shown over 200 injuries to animals associated with fireworks including 8 equine fatalities last year. There is an increasing tendency to let off fireworks at unsocial hours and not just at festival times.

people need to have proper training and understand the law and their responsibilities when handling fireworks. There need to be serious consequences for having fireworks without a licence to discourage people from flouting the law, and the law needs to be enforced.

I don't think an online course is a sufficient requirement.

as a minimum! A licence should be dependent on the operator being registered and trained- sort of like pub licencing

It seems to complicate the whole issue unnecessarily

Should not be allowed for 'individual' use, at all.

impossible to enforce

On-line training doesnt confirm who is actually taking the training or inputting answers

There would need to be addition checks/requirements before granting a license based on a basic online course. Background checks? Proof of identity? Is the person doing the online course the person who will have the license?

It will reduce the risk of injury and misuse.

Would help to prevent dangerous misuse

Discourage dangerous misuse of fireworks

Agree but they should need to show proof of this when purchasing fireworks. If possible the outer part of the carton should have a traceable bar code so if they are set off at inappropriate times the purchaser can be traced back.

A basic online course would force people to get an understanding of the hazards of fireworks and would be more likely to get them to think seriously about using them responsibly.

Don't sell fireworks to anyone, except registered displays. There, I've made it easy for you to construct a new law.

This is pointless as the minority that ruin it for the majority, will not take one blind bit of notice. All that’s happening here is punishment of decent responsible person.

Only reputable organisations should be able to buy fireworks, an online course would not stop them being used inappropriately.

The people who use fireworks anti-socially won't take any notice of this, they will just buy them over the border, or worse mail order from Eastern Europe as happens today. What's needed is to enforce the current law properly.

So, lets suppose you substitute "CAT F2 and F3 fireworks" for "alcohol". Do you think people would sit an online course to understand the dangers and harm that the misuse of "alcohol" causes and pay a fee to possess alchohol...or would they simply go and buy it illegally from the back of van without knowing if the alcohol was safe or not! You go work that one out!

I disagree with this because it should be more than a basic course & more specialised

I think that anyone using such items need to have proper training and assessment as on line training can be done by someone other than the actual person applying for the license and is a cop out.

Anyone handling, storing and using explosive material should have training. People can then be educated about the effect fireworks have on animals, livestock and people, and what they should do to minimise this.


You need a driving license for a car, it should be much the same for fireworks, that way not everyone and their granny can get one

People should have training before handling fireworks.

Waste iof time. Taking things way too far.

The distress caused to animals is the main reason.

Training should be required to use fireworks.

Anyone in charge of firework displays should have full knowledge of safety procedures

The members of the public causing problems through anti-social behaviour will not stopped from trouble-making because a license is required. How many people drive without insurance?

I am in favour of a total ban on fireworks due to the distress they cause animals. Failing that, to minimise the impact and for safety reasons, fireworks should only be sold for use at organised displays with significant training-not a simple on line course

Whilst I think this may be helpful in some cases I am not entirely convinced it will ensure safe and responsible use by some members of the general public unfortunately.

It would educate people on best practice

Not effective and easily bypassed by one person applying for several people and could lead to criminals using the system

All 4 respondents agreed with this measure. There was overall agreement with need for training, but opposition to it being only in an online format. Arguments against this format included: -Digital exclusion -Comparison with driving license training in which in person training is essential, despite a potential online theoretical element -Issues in authenticating identity of individuals taking the online training

I feel the time frame available between October and November is too long. At most make them available 3-4 days.I have lived with dogs that went into such panics they would rip out parts of door or stairs to get away, nowhere felt safe to them. Dogs that did this at no other time. Medication for this is not to be used long term affect the animal. We should not be forced to medicate them for weeks or chance that night being the one that more fireworks went off. Medication didn’t calm my dogs fear.

Regardless of course people will use them how they want and most will tick they have read or completed course without actually fully doing it. People buy fireworks and let other use them and set them up to so the course is pointless and won’t limit time frame open for them to use the fireworks. Meaning it will still have as big a long term effect in animals petrified of them.

as fireworks laws are flaunted too often any idea like this may help but realistically how will this change anything when we are so short policed. With many real crimes not even being looked into as not enough officers or time or only being spoken to a number of days later. How are they supposed to prioritise when they already can not cope or do half the jobs the police force us to be able to enforce.

Don't think general public should have access to high category Fireworks

I want a TOTAL BAN on public sales

Training will not stop anti-social use. What it will do it force people to obtain fireworks illegally from abroad. These will be unrestricted and more dangerous. (see the situation in the ROI where fireworks are banned but they see more firework injuries than the rest of the UK!) A lack of training is not the reason for anti-social use of fireworks. Those who use use fireworks responsibly and safely each year know what to do already. This "training" will make zero difference.

I can't see how this would help minimize the amount of time and occasions fireworks are used for and therefore limit the trauma caused to animals & humans.

It should be against the law for members of the public to have fireworks. This should be enforced.

Totally impractical, unenforceable and a waste of resources

No online course will ever be a substitute for real experience. It will be easy to cheat the system (get a mate to do it for you) and won't stop anyone who wants to let them off dangerously.

This will not discourage the use of antisocial use ! It will just make it worse ! Antisocial users already have disregard for law and rules. This will only encourage such behaviour.

Anyone using explosives should have proper training on handling them, storing them safely and using them responsibly - the training should include outlining the responsibilities to ensure limiting the impact on vulnerable people and pets, livestock and wildlife. Should also cover the impact on the environment through air and water pollution, and the impact the debris has

Current laws are Sufficient and just require ENFORCEMENT !!

As with most things done like this, it would be too easy to cheat.

At least it is something personally I would just stop selling them why terrorise domestic pets and wildlife for no good reason


I agree reluctantly - it is better than nothing but I do not think it would stop antisocial, thoughtless, selfish people from behaving however they want.

anyone handling explosives should have training on their use, storage and appropriateness, focusing on nuisance, distress to vulnerable people & animals, and environmental effects of chemicals & debris

I do not think this would be an appropriate requirement for members of the public and add a level of red tape and expense. All those organisations and their staff already undertaking public displays must do this before getting a licence and is already specified in Health and Safety Regulations and safety guidance for holding firework displays. Dangerous precedent giving members of the public licences to be easily abused. Who would police and how would this licencing regime be enforced?

What would an online course prove, this is ridiculous! This should not be available to the general public!

Should be the first step in getting a licence but still need training too

This is not sufficient requirement for handling explosives.

It would make people aware of dangers to themselves and others and the appropriate precautions to take before using fireworks. It might affect the type of firework they choose to buy if they are more informed, too.

If the decision is made to allow members of the general public to purchase fireworks then they MUST have appropriate training and be licenced.

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