The City of Cape Town has urged the public to exercise caution over the festive period of celebrations, particularly when discharging fireworks.

Emergency and law enforcement services will be on high alert this weekend. Capetonians have been urged to celebrate responsibly, and are reminded of the designated areas for setting off fireworks.

The City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, and Social Services, Alderman JP Smith, said the city is expecting extravagant celebrations.

“Good weather is expected and that means many people will ring in the New Year with dazzling displays of exploding pyrotechnics. Fireworks are beautiful but also dangerous. I want to urge the pubic to exercise caution when discharging fireworks. With the current water crisis, we cannot afford any fires caused by negligence,” he said.

The same sites which were available to the public for Guy Fawkes are the same designated areas for New Years Eve:

•         Athlone Stadium parking area (eastern side), Klipfontein Road, Athlone
•         Wesfleur sports field, Reygersdal Drive, Atlantis
•         Bishop Lavis sports field, Lavis Drive, Bishop Lavis
•         Metropolitan sports grounds, Melkhout Street, Bonteheuwel
•         Blue Downs sports field, Blue Downs
•         Maiden’s Cove parking area, Victoria Road, Camps Bay
•         Delft Central sports grounds, Main Road, Delft
•         Macassar Beach parking area, Macassar Road, Macassar
•         Swartklip sports complex, Swartklip Road, Mitchells Plain
•         Sarepta sports complex, Sarepta
•         Strandfontein Pavilion, Strandfontein
•         Tourism Centre, Athens Road, Table View beachfront (with the following road closures: Marine Drive between Dolphin Beach Hotel and Marine Circle; Waves Edge will be closed off at Athens Road, Popham and Dunbar Streets)

Designated sites will be closed if weather conditions are not conducive to the discharge of fireworks.

Alderman JP Smith also urged a reminder to residents that the use of Chinese lanterns is not permitted, as they increase the risk of fires as they’re left to float into the air and could land anywhere. Smith emphasised on the water crisis and that everyone be especially cautious when handling fireworks to prevent fires.

The city has stated a few safety tips for the discharging of fireworks:

•         Only discharge fireworks that are bought at an accredited shop
•         Only discharge fireworks at the designated sites
•         Only use fireworks as directed by the instructions printed on the package
•         Children must be supervised at all times when around fireworks
•         Do not discharge fireworks indoors
•         Make sure that you discharge the fireworks out of range of spectators and any other structures or vehicles
•         Do not try to re-ignite a ‘dud’ as it could explode near your hands or face
•         Only light one firework at a time
•         Do not make your own fireworks
•         Do not light fireworks inside any type of container
•         Never discharge fireworks while under the influence of intoxicating substances

General emergencies can be directed via the City’s Public Emergency Communication Centre by calling 021 480 7700 from a cellphone or 107 from a landline. Members of the public with information relating to the illegal sale or use of fireworks can report this to the Metro Police Call Centre on 0860 765 423 or to the South African Police Service on 10111.

Picture credit Pexels

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