Since 2019, the City no longer provides designated fireworks sites for Guy Fawkes, Diwali and New Year’s Eve, but those wishing to host fireworks displays can apply for a permit to do so in terms of the National Explosives Act and the Community Fire Safety By-Law.
According to the City of Cape Town, any event where 200-plus attendees are expected, or that requires any infrastructure build, will also require an Events permit from the City.
“In the past, providing designated sites did not deter the illegal discharge of fireworks in residential areas and it remains a problem as evidenced by the number of complaints we receive during the first week of November and on New Year’s Eve.
“Many residents, especially pet owners, oppose the use of fireworks and animal welfare organisations have their hands full on these nights. Residents are reminded that only national government has the authority to ban fireworks,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith.
Here’s how to apply for a permit to host a firework display:
- Apply to the South African Police Service via email on [email protected].
- Copy the Head of the City’s Fire and Life Safety Section in the application – [email protected].
If the application is approved by SAPS, you would then have to make contact with the Fire and Rescue Service’s Fire Life Safety Section in the area where the display will be held so that a site inspection can be carried out to determine whether the site is safe to host fireworks. But that’s not all. Permission also needs to be obtained from residents and businesses in the area.
The City reminds the public that the import and sale of fireworks without the necessary permissions outlined in the Explosives Act is illegal, including the discharge of fireworks in an area not specifically designated for it.
“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,” the statement reads.
Anyone with information relating to the illegal sale or use of fireworks should report this to the City’s Public Emergency Communication Centre on 107 from a landline or 021 480 7700 from a cellphone or to the South African Police Service on 10111.