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Sky lanterns code will make a big difference for farmers - Farron

August 22, 2014 11:40 AM

South Lakes MP made a public plea for residents not to set off sky lanterns as we enter the festive season.Cumbrian MP Tim Farron has welcomed the news that a code has been drawn up to ensure sky lanterns are manufactured to be biodegradable and then that they are sold responsibly.

The code was the outcome of discussions between Government and the industry.

Concerns have been raised about the safety of sky lanterns by MPs like Tim Farron, as they have the potential to create a risk to consumers, cause fires, accidentally alert coastal rescue services, litter the land and sea, injure livestock and could be a risk to aviation.

The new industry code of practice aims to provide guidance for manufacturers, importers, distributors and retailers. The code will help market surveillance authorities recognise the necessary safety checks, the type of warnings and instructions that need to accompany the product, and help ensure the responsible sale and safe use of sky lanterns.

The code of practice can be found here: http://www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/policy/skylanterns.cfm

Tim said: "This new code of conduct is very welcome news. Working with the NFU, government and retailers we have been able to get everyone round the table to come up with a code. I hope that moving forward it will make a difference, but I have said to ministers that if it does not work we must look at every avenue including legislation.

"I have long said while these lanterns are great to look at and can be enjoyed on many different occasions, it is important that we do not allow poor quality lanterns to destroy our countryside and injure livestock. I hope that this code will help us to end the awful scenes some farmers have had to deal with in recent years.

"Finally I want to pay tribute to the Farmers Guardian for their campaigning on this issue. This code, in part, is down to their hard work."