Call for fireworks ban after Table View blaze
FIREWORKS are set to be the focus of heated debate by authorities this week as calls for an outright ban mounted after Guy Fawkes celebrations caused havoc around Cape Town and were blamed for possibly sparking a blaze in Table View.
An online petition attracted more than 100 signatures shortly after being created yesterday, and was just one of several calling for a fireworks ban.
The Table View blaze, one of two fires that broke out on Thursday and continued burning into yesterday, marked a premature start to Cape Town’s fire season.
Firefighting resources were stretched, with helicopters, due to go into action only in December used to drop water in the flames.
Mayoral committee member for safety and security JP Smith joined the call yesterday for a fireworks ban.
“Not surprisingly, we have been inundated with complaints about why fireworks are allowed in the first place.
“The carnage and misery they cause every year is too much. I have asked the city to discuss the matter.” The City of Cape Town does not have the legal power to ban the import, sale and production of fireworks, but the government does.
The city or provincial authorities may, therefore, approach the government to get firework legislation tightened.
Yesterday Smith said he had placed the topic of fireworks on the agenda of a meeting set for Tuesday at which he would ask Mayor Patricia de Lille to decide on ways to tackle the issue.
To mark Guy Fawkes on Thursday people were allowed to discharge fireworks at 12 designated sites around the city. These areas drew thousands of people, resulting in major traffic congestion.
Ten children and six adults suffered injuries and the Metro police received 309 fireworks- related complaints.
Some fireworks were also ignited in non-designated areas.
Yesterday morning photographs circulated online of beaches still littered with the remnants of crackers, and mayoral committee member for utility services Ernest Sonnenberg said clean-up crews had been kept busy.