Following a statement that there will be no designated areas available for fireworks from now on, the City has released another statement saying that there will, in fact, be a designated area for the upcoming Hindu festival, Diwali.
While many have welcomed the decision to not have the designated sites, individuals within the Hindu community have expressed their dissatisfaction about the impact this will have on Diwali later this month. Hence, in the spirit of respecting this Hindu cultural tradition, the City has, in consultation with interested parties, decided to make available the parking lot at Athlone Stadium on Sunday October 27, 2019, for Diwali celebrations.
While there have for years been calls to ban fireworks outright, the City has clarified that it does not have the power to do so and that a ban as such would only be able to be implemented by national government.
What’s more, is that any person who wishes to use fireworks may apply for a permit to do so.
“Organised fireworks displays can still be applied for, because the City has not imposed a ban on fireworks – we have simply decided not to have designated City sites this year. The Community Fire Safety By-law, read in conjunction with the Explosives Act, permit applications for public fireworks displays,” said Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security JP Smith in a public statement.
“We have a problem with illegal fireworks imports, sale and detonation, particularly in Cape Town between October and January annually,” Smith adds.
Residents are reminded that, in terms of Section 30 of the Explosives Act of 1956, the use or detonation of any fireworks in any building and public thoroughfare is liable to a R200 fine; selling fireworks to a child or anyone under the age of 16 is liable to a R300 fine; allowing a child or person under the age of 16 to handle fireworks without adult supervision is liable to a R300 fine.
Members of the public with information relating to the illegal sale or use of fireworks should report this to the City’s Public Emergency Call Centre on 107 from a landline or 021 480 7700 from a cellphone or to the South African Police Service on 10111.