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SPCA Seeks Ban on Fireworks for Unlicensed Display


For release: 20 October 2005

SPCA to Seek Ban on Firework Sales for Unlicensed Displays

The Royal New Zealand SPCA is to seek a ban on the sale of fireworks, other than for licensed public displays.

“This is one of the first issues we plan to discuss with the new government. We will be seeking assistance from the New Zealand Fire Service and other agencies to achieve a ban by Guy Fawkes Night 2006, “says the SPCA’s National Chief Executive, Robyn McDonald.

“Every year, the period around November 5th, is a time of terror and danger for countless domestic and farm animals. The unsupervised use of fireworks is also dangerous to humans and particularly to children, while also posing a significant threat to property.

“Many animal species, including dogs, cats and horses, have far more acute hearing than humans. The loud screeches and explosions produced by fireworks, along with the bright flashing lights, will often cause animals to bolt in panic. As a result, many get lost or are killed or injured in road accidents.

“Even if they don’t bolt, the fright can have severe or even fatal consequences, particularly for older animals or those with heart conditions,” she says.

Robyn McDonald adds that the dangers to humans and to property from irresponsible firework usage are also considerable.

“In the weeks leading up to November 5th last year, there were cases of young people injured by fireworks, letter boxes blown up by sparkler bombs, a school classroom burnt to the ground and residential property set on fire.

“It’s clearly time to tackle this issue seriously and make sure our children, property and animals are all kept safe,” she says.


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