Fireworks for Guy Fawkes go on sale today and Tauranga revellers are being reminded to be safe in their celebrations.

Firework lovers, retailers, pet owners and emergency services were gearing up for the celebrations this weekend and into summer.

Bay of Plenty fire risk management officer Jon Rewi said the fireworks season was always a concern for fire services.

Nationwide it would be a busy weekend for fire services he said, but it would not end there.


"It's the storage of fireworks for Christmas and New Year's that we get really concerned about. The weather is particularly dry then."

He said when people stored fireworks, they were essentially storing explosives.

"A fire cracker is actually gunpowder and fire," he said.

"I recommend people buy them, use them, then that's it."

Public displays were the safest, cheapest place to go for fireworks because someone else was letting them off and you got better value, Mr Rewi said. "Firework displays are fantastic compared to what you can buy in shops."

He said the Fire Service had a range of key safety messages this year including if a firework does not go off the first time, do not attempt to relight it.

Alcohol, drugs and fireworks was not a good combination and keep a bucket of water or a hose ready in case of burns or a fire.

"Not many people think about it but consider your neighbours and keep pets inside. Pets really suffer in the firework season," Mr Rewi said.

Tauranga VetCare veterinarian Nick Sygrove said one of the best things to do for pets during fireworks was to distract them.

"Keep the curtains closed, lights on, TV or radio on so it muffles things."

If pets wanted to hide, let them but make sure they were indoors and you know where they were, Dr Sygrove said.

"For pets that are particularly anxious and get very upset there are medications you can give to settle them further."

Dr Sygrove said VetCare had not had incidents of injured pets in the firework season in recent years.

A pop-up fireworks store on Cameron Rd was all set for firework enthusiasts.

"We sell out every year," store manager Darren said.

The store, Hyalite, stocked a range of fireworks including family packs.

Darren was all for fireworks, saying the majority of people behaved with fireworks and it was only the few silly people that could ruin the celebrations.

Each customer was given a fire service handout on safety guidelines when using fireworks.

St Mary's Catholic School's Fireworks Gala was canned this year for the first time since the mid 1990s.

Principal Ben Fuller said the volunteer PTA group, which organised the event, was put under too much pressure with the new health and safety legislation, which came out in April.

"The amount of time and effort for a parent body to put into running an event that was compliant, profitable and met the needs of the community was proving to be quite a challenge," he said.

It was a sad and difficult decision but Mr Fuller said they decided to take a break for the year and look to running the gala next year.

Fireworks are only sold for the three days up to Guy Fawkes - November 2nd to 5th.

Fireworks are R18 and a 0valid ID is required to buy them, just like alcohol.

It is best to only light fireworks on your own property, far away from anything that could catch fire.

You should also show respect to your neighbours, especially those with young children or pets.