Media Releases

Minister urges safety over Guy Fawkes’ weekend

Thursday, November 3, 2016 - 17:40

People using fireworks this Guy Fawkes’ weekend need to take care, follow instructions and keep them a safe distance from pets and livestock, Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith says.

“I encourage people to enjoy fireworks but also to take care. The golden rules are follow the instructions on the packaging, keep them a safe distance from pets and livestock, and avoid areas of fire risk,” says Dr Smith, who is the Minister responsible for fireworks regulation under the hazardous substances law.

“The number of incidents of harm from fireworks dropped significantly when the Government tightened the rules eight years ago, reducing the days of sale, restricting sales to those aged over 18 and limiting the pack sizes of some fireworks.

“I will be monitoring the reports from ACC, the Fire Service and the SPCA for this year. There does tend to be a greater number of incidents in years when Guy Fawkes occurs at the weekend, such as this year, and when the weather is fine as more people participate in fireworks use.

"The rules are there to protect people, property and the environment. We want people to enjoy Guy Fawkes but do their bit to make sure the fun is safe. Importers, retailers and the people who buy them need to follow the rules and use common sense.”