City of Cape Town spells out fireworks rules, Newsline

CAPE TOWN – The City of Cape Town said residents considering having fireworks displays will need to apply for a permit.

In a statement released on Wednesday, member of the mayoral committee for safety and security Alderman JP Smith said those applying for permits in terms of the National Explosive Act and Community Fire Safety By-Law will be the only ones permitted to have fireworks displays.

He said any hosts planning an event where more than 200 people will be in attendance will need to ensure that the correct infrastructure is built and will require an events permit from the City.

Smith said that, while in previous years designated firework sites were provided, there was no obligation to do so. Since 2019, the City of Cape Town no longer provided these sites for Guy Fawkes, Diwali and New Year’s Eve.

According to the Community Fire Safety By-Law’s chapter 11, “a controlling authority may set aside municipal land for the purpose of the letting off of fireworks by the public, subject to such conditions as may be determined by the controlling authority and indicated by a notice at the site.”

Smith said there was growing public sentiment opposing the use of fireworks and a decreased appetite from sub-councils to approve designated sites.

In addition, he said, the costs of running the sites, availing resources to monitor activities and cleaning made it unfeasible to designate such sites.

The designated sites have also done little to deter the illegal discharge of fireworks in residential areas, Smith said.

He said when this permit process was implemented, it was misinterpreted as a “ban on fireworks” but meant only the national government would have that authority to ban fireworks.

Smith said firework displays can be applied for in terms of the relevant legislation.

He reminded the public that the import and sale of fireworks without the necessary permission was illegal and carry a fine.

The detonation of fireworks in any building or in public will result in a R200 fine. Selling fireworks to a child under the age of 16 will carry a R300 fine. Allowing children under the age of 16 to handle fireworks without adult supervision will also carry a R300 fine.

Individuals wanting to apply for a permit are urged to apply via email to the South African Police Service at capetown.explosives.cmrd@saps.gov.za.

The City’s fire and life safety section can also be copied into the email to Ignatius.smart@capetown.gov.za.

African News Agency