In response to recent wildfires, a “Lunar New Year ban on fireworks, sky lanterns for some regions” has been implemented by Fire and Emergency New Zealand. The affected areas include Wellington District, Canterbury, and Kaikōura. This preventive measure aims to mitigate fire risks during the festive season.
- Wellington, Porirua, Kapiti Coast, and Wairarapa are under a fireworks and sky lantern ban.
- Canterbury and Kaikōura face a total fire ban due to dry conditions.
- Fireworks ban coincides with Lunar New Year, urging safer celebrations.
- Pyrotechnics are still allowed under strict safety measures.
- Public events are recommended for celebrating the Lunar New Year.
Fire Risk Prompts Ban During Festive Season
The ban, effective from 8 am today, addresses the heightened fire danger in the Wellington District. Phil Soal, the district community risk manager, cited the hot, windy, and dry summer as a catalyst for the increased vegetation fire risk. With the weather forecast to continue this trend, managing any potential fires would be challenging.
In Canterbury and Kaikōura, the situation is equally precarious. Dave Stackhouse, the district commander, has reported a busy start to the year with several significant fires. The forecast for the next two months suggests no relief, with continued hot and dry conditions that could escalate fire dangers further.
Lunar New Year Celebrations Under Scrutiny
The timing of the “Lunar New Year ban on fireworks, sky lanterns for some regions” is particularly impactful, as it falls just before the Lunar New Year. Both Soal and Stackhouse have emphasized the high risk associated with fireworks and sky lanterns during this period and have advised against their use.
They encourage celebrating at organized public events, which are deemed safer. Additionally, they remind the public to be cautious with other activities that could pose fire risks, such as operating machinery or welding during the hotter parts of the day.
|Fireworks and sky lanterns
|8 am today
|Canterbury and Kaikōura
|Total fire ban
|Permitted with safety measures
The “Lunar New Year ban on fireworks, sky lanterns for some regions” serves as a precautionary step by Fire and Emergency New Zealand to protect communities during a time of increased fire risk. Celebrants are urged to find alternative ways to mark the occasion, prioritizing safety and adhering to the new regulations. As the ban takes effect, the focus is on preventing wildfires and ensuring a safe environment for all.