Fireworks: sell and use them lawfully or face arrest, police warn

2009-12-31 00:00

POLICE have warned members of the public ahead of the New Year that the use and sale of fireworks — which are explosive devices — are subject to strict controls that will be enforced.

In particular, it should be noted that no child under the age of 16 years may set off fireworks without the supervision of an adult.

Furthermore, in terms of the Animal Protection Act, it is an offence to “ill-treat, infuriate, torture, maim or terrify any animal” and “to use on or attach to any animal any equipment, or appliance in such a manner as will cause such animal to be injured or to suffer unnecessarily”.

SA Police Service spokesman Senior Superintendent Henry Budhram urged the public to be vigilant and report any contraventions of the law to their nearest police station.

Firework-related cases involving animals should be reported directly to the SPCA at 033 386 9267 or after hours at 083 627 9736.

Offenders will be liable to a fine and the fireworks will be confiscated, but if an offence is serious enough, the perpetrators could even be arrested and charged, Budhram warned.

In terms of the South African Explosives Act, fireworks may not be used within 500 metres of a petrol station, in a building or public thoroughfare, or in any resort without written permission of the local authority.

For public displays, written consent must be obtained from the chief inspector of explosives.

Budhram said only wholesale and retail dealers with valid licences issued by the chief inspector of explosives in Pretoria may sell fireworks. They may not be sold by street hawkers or vendors, at flea markets, from the boot of a vehicle or a trailer, or from a spazza shop.



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