THE USE of fireworks during festivities such as New Year’s Day continues to be a serious danger to the community and to animals.
Often people buy the explosive fireworks and are not aware of the safety regulations when using them.
This past New Years’ Day alone, GJ Crookes Hospital treated four patients who were seriously injured as the result of fireworks.
The four are but some of the many throughout the country who were treated for serious injuries to their hands.
Some people have even lost the use of their hands or their fingers owing to the fireworks.
Fireworks classified in the Explosives Act No. 26 of 1956, section 1.3 may only be discharged by a qualified pyro-technician.
Members of the public often do not abide by this rule, thereby posing a threat to themselves, the people around them and to animals.
Time and time again members of the public are warned about the dangers of fireworks and are cautioned to take extra care when lighting them.
They are also advised to fit their pets with collars that have an identification tag on them, in case their pets take flight during explosions.
In light of this members of the public need to adhere to the following when it comes to fireworks:
– No person must allow or permit any child under the age of 16 years to handle or use fireworks, except under the supervision of an adult.
– No person shall ignite, discharge or explode any fireworks on any public road, or in any private residence without the knowledge and consent of the occupant or owner of the property.
– It is unlawful for any person to point or direct a firework at any person, animal, building or motor vehicle where such firework is in the process of exploding or detonating.
– No person shall detonate fireworks in any place where animals are kept.
– No person may terrify, cause stress or endanger the life of any animal with fireworks or by any other means.
– No retail dealer shall sell fireworks to the public other than the consumer fireworks, which are classified as “low hazard”.
– No person may use any fireworks other than the consumer fireworks, on any residential property, except on approved days.