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Fireworks lighting up the sky

Driving tips and other life stuff

5 things to remember this bonfire night

Sandwiched between Halloween and Christmas but without the stress of finding a scary or sparkly outfit - bonfire night is arguably the best event of the year. Who doesn't love wrapping up warm and heading out to watch some firework displays?

That being said, there are some things to remember (remember) about the 5th of November.

  1. Flashy things are distracting

    From the end of October onward you'll be seeing a lot of bangs, flashes and fizzes lighting up the sky. Pretty isn't it? But what could end up being not so pretty is taking your eye off the road to look up at them.

    As tempting as it is, letting yourself get distracted by fireworks while you're driving could be fatal. Driving through a red light, hitting the car in front or not seeing that family step out into the road. A few seconds of sparkle just isn't worth the risk.

    Save your 'ooos','aahs' and neck ache for when your feet are outside of the car. The view will be 10 times better and you'll be able to concentrate on getting that shot for insta.

  2. Parking nightmares

    No, not the title of Channel 4's latest documentary but potentially a situation you could find yourself in.

    There's a few ways this night could pan out:

    1. You assumed there would be a giant car park (don't all fields have their own car park?) and you don't know the area well enough to find a decent place to park.
    2. You're running late and the only spaces left are double yellow, which means you have to park miles away from the entrance gate.
    3. You know a secret spot to get the best views, so you park down that dark back road where you're 100% confident parking wardens DON'T operate.

    The result of these options: you either end up loosing your car, missing the fireworks or paying a hefty fine.

    Parking miles away or in a dark secluded cul-de-sac might save you a few quid, but it's also really attractive for Mr Car Thief who might be on the look out for his next set of wheels.

    So, the moral of this story is...leave early, suss out the parking beforehand, don't park dangerously, inconsiderately or illegally and if paying a bit more means you get to enjoy the show stress-free, do it.

    car and fireworks

    TIP: some friendly residents who live close to the event will often leave a note on their door offering up their drive as a parking space. Check first, then park up. If the note says something less friendly then that - drive on.
  3. Frightened fur babies

    You know when you're sat in a silent classroom or office and a book suddenly jumps off the shelf? And you're pretty sure your heart died of shock for a few seconds. Well imagine that on repeat, x1000 for all the little animals minding their own business on bonfire night.

    Unfortunately, there's not much we can do about the noise. Fireworks are made of gunpowder and anything the includes the word gun is going to be loud. But it does mean you need to be on the look out for any cats, dogs, rabbits, foxes and DEER, who may just dart out in front of your car.

    Frightened cat

    Anyone else thinking the freaky clown from It?

    If the worse happens and you just couldn't stop in time - have a read of this so you know how to deal with hitting an animal.

  4. Excited kiddies (and big kids)

    It could be all the sugar from the candy floss and toffee apples or maybe the thrill that giant rockets bring - but there's something about fireworks night that sends us all a bit hyper. Admit it, even if you're not planning on going out you'll be running upstairs to gaze out of your bedroom window.

    But for the little'uns, being able to stay up late, put their favourite Pepper Pig wellington boots on and be carried around on Dad's shoulders all night is a big event in their tiny diaries.

    Funfair Carousel

    It goes without saying to always keep an eye out for chidren, but this is the time to be EXTRA vigilent for the ones that decide to let go of Mum's hand and walk out into the road. I don't think I've ever been to a bonfire night where I haven't heard "attention please: we have a lost boy in security hut 5 wearing a Buzz Lightyear coat, please come and collect him immediately" over the tannoy.

    Children, crowds and fire is not a happy mix (and that's before you've tried to tackle the question on why there's a man burning on top of a haystack). So whether you're driving or trudging to a show on foot - keep a look out for little dazed faces.

  5. Merry-makers

    In the UK we like a celebration. A reason to get our friends and family together, grab some food, have a few drinks then quietly make our way home for an early night. Right?

    Well, in an ideal world, yes. But let's be real here - people have different opinions for what counts as a few drinks.

    At any big event you'll find people who've got a biiiit too excited and have drunk more alcohol than they can handle. Those people will likely be the ones staggering into the road as you've glanced down to change the radio.

    If you're driving to the fireworks this year with a car full of mates (top marks for being designated driver by the way) just make sure you're not distracted. They'll be enough distractions outside of the car to worry about.

  6. Over November and already thinking about Christmas? Here's 5 festive driving stresses to prepare for. You can thank me in mince pies.


Katey Joined ingenie in 2014 and is in charge of all things social and content. She passed her driving test in 2015 and her first car is a Toyota Yaris T3 named Tyrone.