Fire chief calls for urgent Chinese lantern review after "devastating" fire at Croft Farm Leisure Park

Ledbury Reporter: Fire chief call for urgent Chinese lantern review after "devastating" fire Fire chief call for urgent Chinese lantern review after "devastating" fire

A FIRE chief is calling for an urgent review of Chinese lanterns after a “devastating" fire destroyed more than 80 caravans at a festival site.

The blaze happened at Croft Farm Leisure Park, Bredons Hardwick, near Bredon, where the popular Lakefest Festival is held annually, on Sunday, November 24 Following a thorough fire investigation including interviews with eye witnesses and viewing CCTV footage, Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service believes it was caused by a Chinese lantern and Chief Fire Officer Mark Yates is calling for change.

He said: “There is no doubt that this was a devastating fire which has affected a popular local business and a significant number of private caravans and mobile homes which were stored on site.”

“Our fire investigation has now concluded and we believe that a Sky Lantern caused the fire. Whilst there is no doubt the lanterns are popular and are often used at events, the potential damage they can cause is significant.

“Not only do they pose a risk to livestock and agriculture but also to property, as was the case in this incident in Bredons Hardwick.”

He added: “It is quite bizarre that it can be considered acceptable to allow a lit object to float across towns and countryside without any knowledge of if or where it may land and subsequently cause a fire.

“As a Chief Fire Officer I do not consider that it is acceptable to allow burning objects to be set free across our counties without any consideration of the damage they may do to property or livestock and I would ask event organisers not to use sky lanterns for any purpose.

“I believe now is the time to review the use of sky lanterns and recognise that they can pose a significant risk to property as this fire in Worcestershire demonstrates.

“Only a few months ago fire engines from Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service assisted at large fire in a plastic recycling site in Smethwick which was also caused by a sky lantern.”

Although firefighters stopped the fire from spreading to a 2,000 litre LPG storage vessel, the damage caused to the site and the towing caravans and mobile homes in storage was severe.

Comments (26)

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1:55pm Tue 3 Dec 13

goodygoody says...

These things should have been banned years ago. Not only do they start fires as can be seen, but they kill wildlife too. Just ban them for goodness sake, now.
These things should have been banned years ago. Not only do they start fires as can be seen, but they kill wildlife too. Just ban them for goodness sake, now. goodygoody

5:34pm Tue 3 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

goodygoody wrote:
These things should have been banned years ago. Not only do they start fires as can be seen, but they kill wildlife too. Just ban them for goodness sake, now.
Lanterns don't kill wildlife anymore as they do to have wire frames. A law in 2010 stopped the wired ones from being manufactured.

As for fires, this is undoubtably true. People are just not responsable for their actions. But saying that, this is only the second reported large scale blaze that has occurred from the thousands (if not millions) of lanterns that have been set off this year.

The Far East launch many more lanterns than we do in one festival than we do in one year and they have no problems. There's no good banning them as you can still buy them online and how can this be policed?
[quote][p][bold]goodygoody[/bold] wrote: These things should have been banned years ago. Not only do they start fires as can be seen, but they kill wildlife too. Just ban them for goodness sake, now.[/p][/quote]Lanterns don't kill wildlife anymore as they do to have wire frames. A law in 2010 stopped the wired ones from being manufactured. As for fires, this is undoubtably true. People are just not responsable for their actions. But saying that, this is only the second reported large scale blaze that has occurred from the thousands (if not millions) of lanterns that have been set off this year. The Far East launch many more lanterns than we do in one festival than we do in one year and they have no problems. There's no good banning them as you can still buy them online and how can this be policed? tub_thumper

5:50pm Tue 3 Dec 13

notANOTHERbrilliantheadline says...

We're not in China..
We're not in China.. notANOTHERbrilliantheadline

7:36pm Tue 3 Dec 13

Chronos says...

One of these days, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt.
One of these days, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt. Chronos

7:37pm Tue 3 Dec 13

Chronos says...

Sooner or later, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt.
Sooner or later, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt. Chronos

10:12pm Tue 3 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

Chronos wrote:
Sooner or later, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt.
There should be plenty of people about to notice. Apart from landing on the forecourt (which is made of concrete) I don't think there is any chance of any fire. Even if it does land near a pump the flame should be pretty small and not enough to ignite anything.
[quote][p][bold]Chronos[/bold] wrote: Sooner or later, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt.[/p][/quote]There should be plenty of people about to notice. Apart from landing on the forecourt (which is made of concrete) I don't think there is any chance of any fire. Even if it does land near a pump the flame should be pretty small and not enough to ignite anything. tub_thumper

10:21pm Tue 3 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

notANOTHERbrillianth
eadline
wrote:
We're not in China..
I didn't say we were in China. I actually said that they don't have a problem with 2 blazes a year by sending thousands of lanterns into the sky during their festivals. The Chinese developed these over 2000 years ago. If they had a problem then they would have banned them years ago. We have only been using them in large numbers since 2008. Do the maths...
[quote][p][bold]notANOTHERbrillianth eadline[/bold] wrote: We're not in China..[/p][/quote]I didn't say we were in China. I actually said that they don't have a problem with 2 blazes a year by sending thousands of lanterns into the sky during their festivals. The Chinese developed these over 2000 years ago. If they had a problem then they would have banned them years ago. We have only been using them in large numbers since 2008. Do the maths... tub_thumper

11:32pm Tue 3 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

tub_thumper wrote:
Chronos wrote:
Sooner or later, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt.
There should be plenty of people about to notice. Apart from landing on the forecourt (which is made of concrete) I don't think there is any chance of any fire. Even if it does land near a pump the flame should be pretty small and not enough to ignite anything.
Down voted? But it's true. The only reason why there has been devastating fires is because no-on has been around to notice. Has any one of these anti-lantern people ever actually seen how small the flame is on these things?
[quote][p][bold]tub_thumper[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Chronos[/bold] wrote: Sooner or later, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt.[/p][/quote]There should be plenty of people about to notice. Apart from landing on the forecourt (which is made of concrete) I don't think there is any chance of any fire. Even if it does land near a pump the flame should be pretty small and not enough to ignite anything.[/p][/quote]Down voted? But it's true. The only reason why there has been devastating fires is because no-on has been around to notice. Has any one of these anti-lantern people ever actually seen how small the flame is on these things? tub_thumper

11:34pm Tue 3 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

Fireworks should be banned too then?
Fireworks should be banned too then? tub_thumper

8:14am Wed 4 Dec 13

Ted Elgar says...

@tub_thumper. You can buy hard drugs and knives Online, it doesn't mean they are legal to use.

These things really are dangerous.
To compare them to fireworks is nonsense. Fireworks are desgined to go off, then fall to earth spent. Mostly this isnt done on farmland used for grazing.

Lanterns travel for large distances, on fire, and fall to earth, on fire. Really dangerous, bad for the environment (see setting fire to SSSI / SAC / Ramsar sites). Stupid idea.
@tub_thumper. You can buy hard drugs and knives Online, it doesn't mean they are legal to use. These things really are dangerous. To compare them to fireworks is nonsense. Fireworks are desgined to go off, then fall to earth spent. Mostly this isnt done on farmland used for grazing. Lanterns travel for large distances, on fire, and fall to earth, on fire. Really dangerous, bad for the environment (see setting fire to SSSI / SAC / Ramsar sites). Stupid idea. Ted Elgar

12:01pm Wed 4 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

We should listen to the Fire services, since these chines lanterns are an uncontrolled arial fire bomb. And thousands of fires have been caused by a SPARK not even a naked flame.
We should listen to the Fire services, since these chines lanterns are an uncontrolled arial fire bomb. And thousands of fires have been caused by a SPARK not even a naked flame. Jabbadad

1:18pm Wed 4 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

Ted Elgar wrote:
@tub_thumper. You can buy hard drugs and knives Online, it doesn't mean they are legal to use.

These things really are dangerous.
To compare them to fireworks is nonsense. Fireworks are desgined to go off, then fall to earth spent. Mostly this isnt done on farmland used for grazing.

Lanterns travel for large distances, on fire, and fall to earth, on fire. Really dangerous, bad for the environment (see setting fire to SSSI / SAC / Ramsar sites). Stupid idea.
@Ted Elgar

The lanterns only fall to earth when the flame has gone out. It's simple science really. The only time that lanterns go out of control is when they have been launched in windy conditions or when the paper has caught alight as the lanterns are launched. If so, they won't travel very far at all - actually they will hardly leave the ground. The people that are around would be able to see the error that they have caused and will hopefully sort the problem out.

And as for buying them online - that's my point. If they are made illegal then that won't stop the problem - like the drugs and knives you've used as an example.

And the comparison to fireworks is not nonsense. A firework is an explosive device which uncontrollably travels through the air at 150mph and can travel up to 200 meters. There are many dangers than can go wrong: i.e. fireworks tipping over before being launched, shots going off at ground level, cross ignition, fuse failure and firework fall out over an audience. Apart from fire danger, horrible injuries occur too. Even sparklers - three sparklers light together is as hot as a blowtorch. Lanterns have a small flame and gently lift off the ground via hot air.

Like I said before - apart from this blaze at Croft Farm and the huge one at the recycling plant in Smethwick back in the summer - the dangers are no where in the region of those caused by fireworks.

@Jabbadad

I hardly call a lantern a "fire bomb" as they don't explode. And what "spark" are you referring to? A spark is cause by an ignition source. There is no electric or gas present in the lanterns to produce such a thing. Can you provide statistics on the comparison of the "thousands" of fires caused by a lantern "spark" compared to the fires caused by fireworks?


ALSO: May I add that I don't condone any misuse of either fireworks or Chinese lanterns. Clearly, devastating fires have been caused by both. It's usually down to human error. Lanterns have only been popular in this country since around 2008. It's like people are still in fear if the unknown. Fireworks have been in use much longer and thus have created more damage. I'm not "sticking up" for Chinese Lanterns. I just wish people would use them correctly and that people should be aware of all the facts (and even witness a launch) before actually slagging them off. That all...
[quote][p][bold]Ted Elgar[/bold] wrote: @tub_thumper. You can buy hard drugs and knives Online, it doesn't mean they are legal to use. These things really are dangerous. To compare them to fireworks is nonsense. Fireworks are desgined to go off, then fall to earth spent. Mostly this isnt done on farmland used for grazing. Lanterns travel for large distances, on fire, and fall to earth, on fire. Really dangerous, bad for the environment (see setting fire to SSSI / SAC / Ramsar sites). Stupid idea.[/p][/quote]@Ted Elgar The lanterns only fall to earth when the flame has gone out. It's simple science really. The only time that lanterns go out of control is when they have been launched in windy conditions or when the paper has caught alight as the lanterns are launched. If so, they won't travel very far at all - actually they will hardly leave the ground. The people that are around would be able to see the error that they have caused and will hopefully sort the problem out. And as for buying them online - that's my point. If they are made illegal then that won't stop the problem - like the drugs and knives you've used as an example. And the comparison to fireworks is not nonsense. A firework is an explosive device which uncontrollably travels through the air at 150mph and can travel up to 200 meters. There are many dangers than can go wrong: i.e. fireworks tipping over before being launched, shots going off at ground level, cross ignition, fuse failure and firework fall out over an audience. Apart from fire danger, horrible injuries occur too. Even sparklers - three sparklers light together is as hot as a blowtorch. Lanterns have a small flame and gently lift off the ground via hot air. Like I said before - apart from this blaze at Croft Farm and the huge one at the recycling plant in Smethwick back in the summer - the dangers are no where in the region of those caused by fireworks. @Jabbadad I hardly call a lantern a "fire bomb" as they don't explode. And what "spark" are you referring to? A spark is cause by an ignition source. There is no electric or gas present in the lanterns to produce such a thing. Can you provide statistics on the comparison of the "thousands" of fires caused by a lantern "spark" compared to the fires caused by fireworks? ALSO: May I add that I don't condone any misuse of either fireworks or Chinese lanterns. Clearly, devastating fires have been caused by both. It's usually down to human error. Lanterns have only been popular in this country since around 2008. It's like people are still in fear if the unknown. Fireworks have been in use much longer and thus have created more damage. I'm not "sticking up" for Chinese Lanterns. I just wish people would use them correctly and that people should be aware of all the facts (and even witness a launch) before actually slagging them off. That all... tub_thumper

2:11pm Wed 4 Dec 13

Chronos says...

tub_thumper wrote:
Chronos wrote: Sooner or later, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt.
There should be plenty of people about to notice. Apart from landing on the forecourt (which is made of concrete) I don't think there is any chance of any fire. Even if it does land near a pump the flame should be pretty small and not enough to ignite anything.
Point taken Tub.

But it is worth noting that the real danger at filling stations is not of liquid petrol being set alight. It's the fumes that are most likely to be ignited.

And as you will agree, the fumes are incredibly inflammable. I would imagine that it's probably a case of health and safety going a little too far, but isn't that why you're not supposed to use anything that can cause a spark (i.e. mobile phones etc.) when refuelling?
[quote][p][bold]tub_thumper[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Chronos[/bold] wrote: Sooner or later, one of these infernal things will drop onto a petrol station forecourt.[/p][/quote]There should be plenty of people about to notice. Apart from landing on the forecourt (which is made of concrete) I don't think there is any chance of any fire. Even if it does land near a pump the flame should be pretty small and not enough to ignite anything.[/p][/quote]Point taken Tub. But it is worth noting that the real danger at filling stations is not of liquid petrol being set alight. It's the fumes that are most likely to be ignited. And as you will agree, the fumes are incredibly inflammable. I would imagine that it's probably a case of health and safety going a little too far, but isn't that why you're not supposed to use anything that can cause a spark (i.e. mobile phones etc.) when refuelling? Chronos

6:50pm Wed 4 Dec 13

DarrenM says...

Mobile phones are no danger at filling stations its a myth. There never been a single petrol station explosion attributed to mobile phones. In the very tiny number of reports otherwise, that was always an initial report that was refuted by a later investigation. Static electricity is a much greater risk.
Mobile phones are no danger at filling stations its a myth. There never been a single petrol station explosion attributed to mobile phones. In the very tiny number of reports otherwise, that was always an initial report that was refuted by a later investigation. Static electricity is a much greater risk. DarrenM

9:55pm Wed 4 Dec 13

PrivateSi says...

NUKE THE CHINESE
NUKE THE CHINESE PrivateSi

10:38pm Thu 5 Dec 13

Guy66 says...

notANOTHERbrillianth
eadline
wrote:
We're not in China..
Well spotted, we are not!

Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks
[quote][p][bold]notANOTHERbrillianth eadline[/bold] wrote: We're not in China..[/p][/quote]Well spotted, we are not! Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks Guy66

5:37am Fri 6 Dec 13

Vox populi says...

Ban everything remotely dangerous, stay in bed. Make nobody take responsibility for anything. It really is the ONLY way....
Ban everything remotely dangerous, stay in bed. Make nobody take responsibility for anything. It really is the ONLY way.... Vox populi

11:03pm Sat 7 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

Guy66 wrote:
notANOTHERbrillianth

eadline
wrote:
We're not in China..
Well spotted, we are not!

Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks
I NEVER SAID WE WERE?!
[quote][p][bold]Guy66[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]notANOTHERbrillianth eadline[/bold] wrote: We're not in China..[/p][/quote]Well spotted, we are not! Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks[/p][/quote]I NEVER SAID WE WERE?! tub_thumper

7:58pm Mon 9 Dec 13

notANOTHERbrilliantheadline says...

tub_thumper wrote:
notANOTHERbrillianth

eadline
wrote:
We're not in China..
I didn't say we were in China. I actually said that they don't have a problem with 2 blazes a year by sending thousands of lanterns into the sky during their festivals. The Chinese developed these over 2000 years ago. If they had a problem then they would have banned them years ago. We have only been using them in large numbers since 2008. Do the maths...
I wasn't talking to you.. Just saying we are not in china ( don't bother with the lanterns )
[quote][p][bold]tub_thumper[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]notANOTHERbrillianth eadline[/bold] wrote: We're not in China..[/p][/quote]I didn't say we were in China. I actually said that they don't have a problem with 2 blazes a year by sending thousands of lanterns into the sky during their festivals. The Chinese developed these over 2000 years ago. If they had a problem then they would have banned them years ago. We have only been using them in large numbers since 2008. Do the maths...[/p][/quote]I wasn't talking to you.. Just saying we are not in china ( don't bother with the lanterns ) notANOTHERbrilliantheadline

7:59pm Mon 9 Dec 13

notANOTHERbrilliantheadline says...

Guy66 wrote:
notANOTHERbrillianth

eadline
wrote:
We're not in China..
Well spotted, we are not!

Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks
Yes.
[quote][p][bold]Guy66[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]notANOTHERbrillianth eadline[/bold] wrote: We're not in China..[/p][/quote]Well spotted, we are not! Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks[/p][/quote]Yes. notANOTHERbrilliantheadline

8:01pm Mon 9 Dec 13

notANOTHERbrilliantheadline says...

tub_thumper wrote:
Guy66 wrote:
notANOTHERbrillianth


eadline
wrote:
We're not in China..
Well spotted, we are not!

Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks
I NEVER SAID WE WERE?!
Yet again, wasn't quoting your comment..
[quote][p][bold]tub_thumper[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Guy66[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]notANOTHERbrillianth eadline[/bold] wrote: We're not in China..[/p][/quote]Well spotted, we are not! Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks[/p][/quote]I NEVER SAID WE WERE?![/p][/quote]Yet again, wasn't quoting your comment.. notANOTHERbrilliantheadline

9:00pm Mon 9 Dec 13

copierman says...

So the fire chief finally speaks out, he must have seen how the voting was going on W.E.News
So the fire chief finally speaks out, he must have seen how the voting was going on W.E.News copierman

10:29pm Mon 9 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

Only the irresponsible and childish are in support of these silly (fire bomb ) lanterns. So they should campaign for Lanterns that will hover in their own back gardens then if there is a problem only their property will be destroyed.
Only the irresponsible and childish are in support of these silly (fire bomb ) lanterns. So they should campaign for Lanterns that will hover in their own back gardens then if there is a problem only their property will be destroyed. Jabbadad

12:02am Tue 10 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

notANOTHERbrillianth
eadline
wrote:
tub_thumper wrote:
Guy66 wrote:
notANOTHERbrillianth



eadline
wrote:
We're not in China..
Well spotted, we are not!

Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks
I NEVER SAID WE WERE?!
Yet again, wasn't quoting your comment..
That's fair enough. I thought you were quoting my comment as I originally said "They don't have any problems in China... Sorry.
[quote][p][bold]notANOTHERbrillianth eadline[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]tub_thumper[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Guy66[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]notANOTHERbrillianth eadline[/bold] wrote: We're not in China..[/p][/quote]Well spotted, we are not! Saved me a load of time trying to order a beer in Chinese. Thanks[/p][/quote]I NEVER SAID WE WERE?![/p][/quote]Yet again, wasn't quoting your comment..[/p][/quote]That's fair enough. I thought you were quoting my comment as I originally said "They don't have any problems [with fires from lanterns] in China... Sorry. tub_thumper

8:55am Tue 10 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

Having visited China I found that it is quite a damp smog filled country (perhaps why so many people wear face masks) . Yet also filled with wonderful history and lovely people. It is also a very much larger country than the UK with huge expanses of rural land. And the lantern releases are important ceromonies not 3 or 4 idiots having a laugh.
Having visited China I found that it is quite a damp smog filled country (perhaps why so many people wear face masks) . Yet also filled with wonderful history and lovely people. It is also a very much larger country than the UK with huge expanses of rural land. And the lantern releases are important ceromonies not 3 or 4 idiots having a laugh. Jabbadad

10:43am Tue 10 Dec 13

tub_thumper says...

Jabbadad wrote:
Having visited China I found that it is quite a damp smog filled country (perhaps why so many people wear face masks) . Yet also filled with wonderful history and lovely people. It is also a very much larger country than the UK with huge expanses of rural land. And the lantern releases are important ceromonies not 3 or 4 idiots having a laugh.
You have contradicted yourself. The point that you make is that lanterns are falling out of the sky and causing fires. So, it shouldn't matter whether lanterns are being launched by many people at important festivals or by the "3 or 4 idiots" launching them in this country. This doesn't justify your argument at all. And also, may I add, we are not in China!
[quote][p][bold]Jabbadad[/bold] wrote: Having visited China I found that it is quite a damp smog filled country (perhaps why so many people wear face masks) . Yet also filled with wonderful history and lovely people. It is also a very much larger country than the UK with huge expanses of rural land. And the lantern releases are important ceromonies not 3 or 4 idiots having a laugh.[/p][/quote]You have contradicted yourself. The point that you make is that lanterns are falling out of the sky and causing fires. So, it shouldn't matter whether lanterns are being launched by many people at important festivals or by the "3 or 4 idiots" launching them in this country. This doesn't justify your argument at all. And also, may I add, we are not in China! tub_thumper

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