Chinese lanterns – a paper lantern made using oiled rice paper consisting of a candle or fuel cell filled with paraffin wax suspended inside a wire frame. These lanterns have become a famous sighting at Weddings, Birthdays, Festivals and recently at the New Year’s eve celebrations.
Floating high in the sky, these lanterns can float up to several miles with the breeze and land when the fuel runs out. The unprecedented flight of a lantern-carrying live fire raises many questions in terms of safety.
Shining bright in the sky, these lanterns do have a dark side. Flying free in the sky with no set flight path, these lanterns are likely to get entangled in trees/power lines or land in busy traffic/residential area/Industrial Parks, posing a threat to natures and human lives alike.
These lanterns have already been banned in many countries for the following reasons:
1 – They get tangled in the trees leading to a fire in residential areas and even forests, causing harm to flora and also any fauna nested on those trees.
2 – They land anywhere causing a threat to passersby on busy roads, open residential areas, and industrial parks by burning any flammable objects that come in contact with the lantern’s flame leading to a major fire hazard.
3 – The debris of the lanterns can harm animals that eat the wire frame enclosed in the lantern, which could lead to internal injuries.
With many environmentalists and conservationist protesting the use and sale of Chinese lanterns in India – it’s highly recommended that we, the residents of Vizag – consider these points the next time we go out to purchase or light a Chinese lantern.