Premier League To Threaten Prison For Fans With Flares, Pyrotechnics
Premier League Football supporters who take flares or smoke bombs into stadiums "are risking banning orders or even prison," according to the BBC. It is "launching a campaign aimed at eradicating the growing trend of fans taking pyrotechnic devices to matches." Recent incidents involving flares "have occurred at Wembley and Villa Park." EPL Head of Supporters Services Cathy Long said, "We will say to fans we understand you think this is a bit of fun but they are dangerous. We want people to be aware of what the dangers are, both to themselves and the people around them. It will also make people aware of what the consequences of their actions are -- that this can carry a banning order, it can carry a custodial sentence, there can be really quite serious consequences for fans and we want to avoid that." So far this season, pyrotechnics "have been used at or in connection with 131 matches at English league grounds, compared to 199 for the whole of last season" (BBC, 10/31).