FIRE crews have urged the public not to set off any lanterns this evening as people welcome in the new year.

South Fire and Rescue made the announcement after numerous fires have been started in the past due to sky lanterns.

A spokesperson said: “Lanterns have not only started several large-scale fires in the past, they have been known to harm animals and can be bad for the environment.

“They have been banned in many places across the country and have been known to start fires - it only takes a small flame to set a tinder-dry field alight.

“The metal wires can also pose a serious risk to animals.”

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue has also urged residents to be careful when setting off fireworks and to abide by Covid-19 rules.