Government response

Myth bust: The Telegraph suggests people won’t be safe when walking dogs at night during any pilot badger culls.

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The public's safety is vital and anyone taking part in the cull must consider the safety of their operations at all times.

The myth: An article in The Daily Telegraph suggests that people walking their dogs at night will not be safe during any pilot badger cull.

The truth: The suggestion that anyone walking their dog at night would be in danger because of pilot badger control activity is completely false.

The public’s safety is vital and anyone taking part in the cull must consider the safety of their operations at all times and must cease operations when it is not safe to do so. People wishing to take part in badger control will need to meet strict firearms safety and competence criteria, hold the right firearms licence and pass a specific, Government approved, training course which includes health and safety. Only then will they be given a licence to take part. They’ll also need to follow best practice guidance which is designed to make sure that the badger control is carried out safely, effectively and humanely.

Farmers and the local police force will scrutinise all safety arrangements ahead of any activity taking place. As shooting will normally happen at dusk or at night, operators must be thoroughly familiar with the terrain, carrying out visits during daylight to check the area, carry out risk assessments and identify safe and unsafe shooting locations to ensure the safety of people, property and other animals at all times.