Please don’t send up sky lanterns to celebrate, Herts landowners plead

Sky lanterns can cause problems for landowners

Sky lanterns can cause problems for landowners - Credit: Tuscaloosa News

A body representing landowners is appealing to festive merrymakers in Hertfordshire to back its ‘ban sky lanterns’ campaign by not releasing what it claims are little more than flying bonfires as part of their Christmas and new year celebrations.

The Country Landowners Association fears that it is only a matter of time before there is a serious accident caused by the potentially dangerous novelties.

CLA East regional surveyor Tim Woodward said: “Sky lanterns are no more than flying bonfires. They are serious fire hazards and also endanger the lives of grazing livestock as well as other wildlife, and create unnecessary litter.

“Those releasing lanterns have no idea of the hazard they pose, nor do they consider the implications of releasing a naked flame with absolutely no control over where it will land.

“Lanterns that land in fields can get chopped up when farmers mow for silage or hay, resulting in fragments of wire in the forage. Cows, which naturally tend to chew things to check them out, get the wire trapped in their gut, resulting in a slow, agonising death.”


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County councils in Essex, Norfolk, Nottinghamshire and Warwickshire have all implemented bans on the release of sky lanterns from their land and property this year, while the government has issued guidance stating that lanterns “can kill animals, litter the countryside and start fires”.

CLA East is looking to collect evidence of damage caused by sky lanterns to support its campaign.

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Anyone who has experienced problems caused by sky lanterns falling on their land should contact east@cla.org.uk, call 01638 590429, or address tweets to @CLAEast.

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