LONDON (AP) — Children as young as 8 years old have smuggled pyrotechnics into stadiums for use by adults, according to a study by English football authorities that shows the use of flares and smoke bombs is on the rise.
The Premier League, Football League and The Football Association have launched a campaign about the danger of pyrotechnics, with 86 percent of supporters surveyed saying they were concerned for their safety at matches.
Figures show that while there were only eight incidents of pyrotechnic use in the 2010-11 season across the English leagues and cup competitions, the number rose to 172 in the 2012-13 season. There were 96 incidents between August and October this season.
During a Premier League match between Aston Villa and Tottenham on Oct. 20, a linesman was struck by a lit smoke canister thrown from the stand.