How to Safely Launch a Sky Lantern
Sky lanterns can provide a spectacular display for any occasion, from birthday parties to weddings.
I have been speaking to Night Sky Lanterns, where together, we’ve put together a little guide on how to launch sky lanterns so that you and your watchers can enjoy their magic safely.
Other Safety Guidelines
Also here are some general safety guidelines that it is important to be aware of and to consider before you launch.
- Be aware of your clothing
You should not wear flammable clothing during a launch and it is advisable to wear gloves for added protection.
- Check the condition of the lantern
Check that the lantern has not been torn during the unpacking or launch preparations because any holes will prevent it from inflating, rising and flying properly and so make it unsuitable for use. If you do discover any holes please DO NOT be tempted to patch them up with sticky tape or similar materials because these will add weight to the lantern and reduce its flight capability.
- Take care when lighting the fuel cell
Always ensure you have stored your lantern in a cool, dry place to avoid the fuel cell drying out. Then when you light the fuel cell, make sure to let the flame spread over the fuel cell so that it is well alight before turning the lantern over.
- Location, location, location
Only release lanterns from a safe location, please consider the following points when planning your launch:
- Wind - avoid releasing if the wind speed is greater than 5 mph because the lantern will travel horizontally faster than it rises which can increase the risk of a lantern getting snagged on an obstruction before it is fully airborne.
- Trees, Pylons and Telegraph poles - tall structures can be an obstacle and lanterns may get caught up so it is best take to release your lanterns in wide open areas and well away from potential obstructions. Also do check the wind direction and take care to avoid launching lanterns which will travel in the direction of nearby power and telephone lines.
- Buildings - setting off lanterns in a built up area is not usually a good idea, as lanterns can get snagged on roofs, aerials and outdoor festive decorations. On the other hand if you’ve access to a rooftop garden this could be an ideal launch pad providing the wind conditions are right.
- Airports - if you live within 5 miles of an airport or airfield, it is recommended to let the Civil Aviation Authority know of your intention to release sky lanterns so they are informed.
- Coastline – lanterns have on occasions been mistaken for distress signals so if you are releasing lanterns in coastal areas with shipping, do tell the local coastguard to avoid possible false call outs.
Following these few simple guidelines will help certainly ensure that everyone can enjoy your lanterns in a safe and responsible manner.
VIDEO: Launching a Sky Lantern
Top UK Sky Lantern Suppliers
- Night Sky Lanterns
Great range of all types of Sky lanterns, from novelty flying lantern packs to chinese lanterns.
- Chinese Lanterns from Sky Candle
Sky candle are the original supplier of Chinese lanterns and Sky lanterns. View and buy our Chinese lantern collection online.
- Chinese Lanterns
One of the UK's leading supplier of authentic Chinese sky lantens. Selling a range of eco friendly lanterns and novelty products.