No emergencies for Guy Fawkes

ANNA WILLIAMS
Last updated 11:30 07/11/2012
Fireworks
Jared Nicoll
Jayde French, 11, Elijah Jones, 11, and Debbie French in Picton

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Despite fireworks sales being up 15 per cent in Marlborough, emergency services say they had a quiet Guy Fawkes this year.

Blenheim deputy fire officer Dion Partridge said yesterday firefighters had not had a single fireworks-related call-out since fireworks went on sale on Friday. The call-outs had been minimal during the past three years or so, he said.

"I think people are just taking more responsibility and using more common sense," he said.

The cold, wet weather over the weekend and Guy Fawkes falling on a Monday night may also have prevented people letting off fireworks, he said.

Constable Andrew Holdaway, of Blenheim, said police dealt with one incident on Monday night after people reported youths letting off fireworks at a property in Howick Rd, Blenheim. They were called to the house about 9.30pm and the youths were warned but no further action was taken.

No other incidents were reported.

Renwick fire brigade senior station officer Grant Flynn said there had been no call-outs in Renwick during the weekend or on Monday night involving fireworks.

He put it down to the wet weather and the safer variety of fireworks being sold.

"We don't get many calls since they stopped using sky rockets," Mr Flynn said.

"They could land any where. We used to get a lot go into toi toi bushes and they just went up."

Since firecrackers and sky rockets had been banned in 1994, the Government has continued to clamp down but stopped short of banning the sale of fireworks.

"Most of them stay on the ground now, which is a good thing," Mr Grant said.

The latest law change in 2007 limited the sale of fireworks to the four days before Guy Fawkes day, raised the purchase age from 14 to 18 and limited the noise to 90 decibels.

The Warehouse Blenheim store manager Ian Daubney said fireworks sales had been about 15 per cent up from last year. The store had been left with only eight or nine boxes from two container loads, he said.

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- The Marlborough Express

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