Sir Greg Knight’s call to ban Chinese sky lanterns

East Yorkshire MP Sir Greg Knight said sky lanterns pose a risk to the public.
East Yorkshire MP Sir Greg Knight said sky lanterns pose a risk to the public.

MP Sir Greg Knight has renewed his calls for people to stop using Chinese sky lanterns.

His plea follows the latest tragedy, this time at a German zoo, where lanterns started a blaze which destroyed premises and killed many exotic primates.

Dozens of animals died in the fire, including five orangutans, two gorillas, a chimpanzee and several monkeys.

The mini hot air balloons are made of paper and fly with the help of a candle inside.

Sir Greg said: “This problem exists not just in Germany but also here. Sky lanterns can harm or kill animals, either by ingestion or by starting fires. They also put farmers crops at risk of being set alight and destroyed.

“These lanterns all land somewhere and whilst they may look momentarily pretty in the sky, they soon become potentially dangerous litter across the countryside.

“There are many ways to celebrate special occasions that don’t create unwanted litter or pose a fire risk – so I’m urging everyone to give sky lanterns a miss.”

The MP added: “I am also calling for the law to be examined in the new Parliament to see if we need to introduce a specific ban. After all, they are, in reality, potentially lethal litter.”

The National Farmers Union has previously said it is opposed to their continued use.