Fire ban is not the time for fireworks

By Grant Harding

1 comment


When it comes to fireworks, I'm out of step with modern thinking.

A return to the days of skyrockets, bangers and everything that went "boom" would make my day. My birthday, that is. Guy Fawkes Day.

Now that I've annoyed a significant part of the readership, I accept that will never happen. The anti-fireworks movement, sensible people all, including the fire service, have successfully highlighted the dangers.

And larrikins by birth, like myself, have had to accept the demise of the Double Happy and even the innocuous Tom Thumb.

While I yearn for a November 5 celebration that's more heavy metal than easy listening, it has come to my attention that some people are completely ignorant about the time of year fireworks are allowed to be set off.

In the 60 days that have passed since the last celebration of the failed attempt to assassinate Britain's King James in the early 17th century, the night sky around Hawke's Bay has regularly featured exploding fireworks.

Even while on holiday in Taupo it was happening, and cost me $122 when my dog tried to come through the cat flap of the house I was staying at.

During the past week, when there have been serious vegetation fires in Havelock North and Ocean Beach, the snap, crackle and pop has continued.

From memory, the most recent November 5 wasn't one of the finest nights of spring, which is why I have a pile of fireworks stacked safely away for 10 months hence.

Others around the province have shown they are not prepared to wait to use their stash, even though there is a total fire ban operating in most parts of Hawke's Bay.

"Fireworks are a pyrotechnic and they can't be discharged without a permit," Hastings District Council principal rural fire officer Trevor Mitchell told Hawke's Bay Today.

That means that the proliferation of fireworks at new year were - other than those featured in official displays - illegal.

I just thought some of you needed to know that.

- HAWKES BAY TODAY

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