Trading Standards Information and Advice: A reminder about the dangers of Chinese Lanterns

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With wedding season now upon us, sales of Chinese Lanterns or sky lanterns are increasing as they become an ever popular choice for weddings and other celebrations.

Trading Standards remind consumers and businesses of East Sussex that are considering selling or using these lanterns to consider the risks involved.

Research previously conducted found incidents where property had been either damaged or destroyed, or the lanterns had caused death or injury to livestock. Non biodegradable lanterns often include metal parts which upon descent are discarded into the surrounding countryside and can cause considerable and sometimes fatal harm.

There are also concerns expressed by the maritime authorities of lanterns that

have been released near the coast and drifting out to sea, being mistaken for

distress flares and so Trading Standards advise anyone planning to release sky lanterns in coastal location to first notify their local Coast guard to try to avoid unnecessary concern.

Although there is no legal requirement Trading Standards would urge consumers and businesses alike to purchase lanterns that are 100% biodegradable (no metal wires), that come with a high quality fuel source and that have comprehensive operating and safety instructions.