Reminder lanterns are banned
Revellers joining in Bonfire Night festivities next month are being reminded that Chinese lanterns are banned throughout the area.
West Dunbartonshire Council became one of the latest local authorities to prohibit the beacons, which are a proven fire risk, earlier this year.
They joined neighbouring Argyll and Bute Council and Stirling Council in banning the lanterns the National Farmers Union (NFU) Scotland say pose a danger to wildlife, forests and livestock.
The union has teamed up with Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park to appeal to the public and local businesses to avoid using the lanterns as Bonfire Night approaches.
Director of conservation and visitor operations at Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, Simon Jones, said:“Bonfire Night is a much-loved tradition and whilst we want everyone to have a fun and safe time; we would ask the public, local businesses and event organisers to consider the detrimental impact lanterns can have.
“Sky lanterns can seem like an innocent way to celebrate special occasions but unfortunately they can cause unintentional damage as there is no control over where they land. We want everyone to enjoy the celebrations but it is important to highlight the dangers surrounding these items as many people may not be aware of the potential harm lanterns can cause to local wildlife and the environment.”
NFU Scotland animal health and welfare manager, Penny Middleton, added: “Across the UK, there have been many reports now of fires started by lanterns and harm to the health of livestock when lanterns have landed in farmers’ fields and have been eaten. There is a further risk to stock when grass is cut and used for winter feed, and the wire is chopped up and subsequently contained in hay or silage.”
The park authority has written to businesses asking them to avoid using lanterns at events held on their land.