'Don't Trick or Mistreat' this Halloween and Bonfire Night
MERSEYSIDE Police are encouraging young
people, families and businesses to play their part in helping to keep their
communities safe over the Halloween and Bonfire Night period. Officers will be
patrolling local neighbourhoods to ensure people can enjoy the festivities in
their area safely but Merseyside Police cannot do this alone. Parents and
guardians are also being asked to help by taking responsibility for their
children's whereabouts and actions and to be mindful of any neighbours who may
be elderly or vulnerable and who might feel frightened or intimidated.
Shopkeepers are also being urged not to sell any items that could be misused to
cause damage:- such as eggs, flour and cans of shaving foam or spray paint. The
force has also designed a short video; aimed at School children and young
people; entitled:- 'Don't Trick or Mistreat,' which shows the
consequences of antisocial behaviour and the people who may be affected by it.
The video, which will be shared on social media and with all local authorities,
can be viewed on
Chief Inspector Chris Hitchell, who is heading this year's operation for
Merseyside Police said:- "This is always a fun time of year and we want to
make sure that everyone can enjoy the organised events and activities safely. We
know that antisocial behaviour is of concern to people, particularly those who
are old and vulnerable, and I want to reiterate my message that we will take
robust action against those found committing antisocial acts. We know the vast
majority of young people have respect for other people and their property, but
we know the behaviour of some can go beyond fun. I want to make it clear that is
not acceptable to throw things at people or their homes, commit criminal damage
or abuse or intimidate people. My message is think about what you are doing and
how you may make other people feel. How would you feel if a member of your own
family was too frightened to leave their own home or walk down the street? The
support of parents and guardians is vital at this time of year. They can
minimise the risk by not letting children hang around the streets with nowhere
to go and know who they are with and what they are doing, especially in the run
up to Halloween and Bonfire Night. Damage caused by used by Halloween 'tricks',
such as throwing eggs and flour, or any objects at windows, doors, cars and
people is a criminal offence. It is also illegal for those under the age of 18
to buy, carry, or use fireworks and under the Explosives Act of 1875 it is
illegal to let off or throw a firework in a public place. Anyone involved in
criminal behaviour could be arrested and receive a fine, a criminal record or
even jail time. If your child is under 16 then you will be liable for payment of
any fine. By taking some simple steps it could prevent that knock on their door
from a Police Officer informing them that their child has been arrested or,
worse still, has been involved in a serious accident."
Station Manager Paul Kay, Arson Reduction Co-ordinator for Merseyside Fire and
Rescue Service said:- "Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service would like
everyone to enjoy Halloween and Bonfire Night as safely as possible. We urge
people to be careful of how they dress on Halloween; some costumes bought in
shops can be flammable so labels should be checked to see how fire resistant the
costumes are. Costumes should not be used to genuinely frighten people,
particularly those who may be elderly and vulnerable Keep clear of all flames
such as candles and lit pumpkins, which could cause burns or costumes to catch
fire. Ideally, use battery operated lights in pumpkins instead of candles. Never
leave children alone with lit candles and make sure they are extinguished before
leaving the room. If clothing does catch fire remember to STOP, DROP and ROLL;
STOP where you are, do not run. DROP to the ground and lie down flat. ROLL over
and over on the ground until the flames are out. Fireworks should be enjoyed at
organised events as they provide safe, controlled displays in places that are
suitable. We would encourage people to take advantage of organised events rather
than risking the safety of themselves, their family and friends by using
fireworks at home."
For information on activities happening over the Halloween and Bonfire Night
period in Merseyside, can be found
► It is illegal for under 18's to buy fireworks, shops
should refuse to sell to people under 18 and ask for proof of age if there is
► It is against the law to carry or use adult
fireworks if you are under 18. An adult firework is any firework except a cap,
cracker snap, novelty match, party popper, serpent, sparkler or throw down.
► Under the Explosives Act of 1875, It is illegal to
let off or throw a firework in a public place.
► It is illegal to sell fireworks form unregistered /
► Don't light fireworks after 11pm, or midnight, on 5
If anyone believes they have information about the illegal sale, use or
possession of fireworks, please contact Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service on:-
0800 731 5958 , Merseyside Police on:- 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on:-
0800 555 111.
Some Safety Advice for Young People:-
► Only trick or treat in your own neighbourhood and
stick with an adult, if possible.
► Stay in well lit areas where there are plenty of
► Make sure an adult knows the area you plan to visit
and what time you'll be back.
► Look out for 'no callers please'
posters and respect your neighbours.
► Keep to pavements and trick or treat on one side of
the street before crossing safely to the other side; don't criss cross.
► Lock away any building materials if you're having
► If you have a wheelie bin avoid leaving it visible
at the front of your home.
► Tidy away anything at the front of your home that
could be used for an illegal bonfire.
► Don't cut through back alleys, parks or fields, and
don't trick or treat too far from home.
► Don't go alone; take an adult with you or stay in a
► Wait to eat any treats until you get home so that an
adult can check them.
► Don't allow children to leave the house with eggs or