An animal-loving homeowner has issued a grim safety warning after his ceramic tortoise was obliterated by a falling firework.
Steve, 69, who is a manager at Meadowcroft Community Centre and his wife Linda, were shocked to find their prized lawn ornament in bits the day after bonfire night.
Mr Mason, who lives in Rembrandt End, said: “My wife came in and told me that the tortoise had been destroyed.
“We initially thought that someone had been in the garden to smash it up - but we quickly found the shell of the firework nearby.”
“I was out at the time, but I have four grandchildren and heaven forbid if they were in the garden when it happened.”
“The thing must weigh about 2lbs, coming from that sort of height it could do some serious damage, as we can see by it smashing my tortoise.”
“If it hit a young child on the head or in the eye, it could have blinded them or even worse killed them.”
“I’m not even sure if they are legally allowed to be this big - it could be a counterfeit one from China where the size isn’t regulated.
“Either way, the authorities have to be more vigilant about what goes on around this time of year, when everybody is having firework parties.”
The Aylesbury Vale District Council website says: “Using fireworks for bonfire night, New Years Eve or a celebration is often a memorable and safe experience for many.
“But for some people it can lead to disaster and serious consequences if firework safety is not followed.
“Only buy fireworks marked BS 7114 which have been safety tested and approved.”
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