Petition to ban fireworks “modernising our rules”

Green Party animal welfare spokesperson Gareth Hughes has accepted a the petition, Hughes said that the private sale of fireworks was dangerous.

Retweeted by Green co-leader @MaramaDavidson

I haven’t bought fireworks for a long time, possibly not in this century, so I have no personal interest in whether I can buy fireworks or not.

I’m aware of issues with personal harm risks and fire risks and adverse effects on pets and animals.

But I have concerns. ‘Modernising our rules’ is a euphemism for BAN – rules to restrict personal choice.

This is not the only fireworks petition on the go.

Petition of Chris Eichbaum – Cease retail sales of fireworks

Published date: 1 Nov 2018

Petition request

That the House of Representatives pass legislation to prohibit the retail sale of fireworks, and institute licensing arrangements for individuals or organisations to responsibly detonate fireworks in public displays approved by the relevant territorial local authority.

Petition reason

At present fireworks can be lawfully sold to any person over the age of 18 years. Accidents involving fireworks result in injuries to many, and to young people disproportionately. Domestic animals are often traumatised by fireworks and their retail sale is opposed by the NZ Veterinary Association that has repeatedly called for a ban. Legislation should facilitate public fireworks displays that are managed by licensed providers and approved by the relevant territorial local authority.


Petition of Melanie Lindstrom – Ban the private sale of fireworks and promote Matariki for public displays

Published date: 13 Nov 2018

Petition request

That the House of Representatives pass legislation banning the private sale of fireworks and urge the Government to promote Matariki, rather than Guy Fawkes, as a culturally significant occasion for public firework displays.

Petition reason

The private sale of fireworks at Guy Fawkes is a commercial enterprise that I believe harms New Zealand. We see distressed pets and wildlife, burn injuries, and multiple fire service callouts. We need to shake off our colonial overcoats and be more culturally responsive to our tangata whenua. Celebrating a failed gunpowder plot from England in 1605 makes no sense in 2018.

‘Guy Fawkes’ is not a ‘commercial enterprise’, it is an opportunity for free trade of goods for sale for entertainment purposes. There is very little celebration of the 1605 gunpowder plot in England.

Celebrating 2000 year old disputed history at Christmas makes no more sense, but some old traditions survive. An attempt to ban Christmas probably wouldn’t go down well (ditto Easter and even the recently adopted tradition Halloween).

But a good practical case can be made for moving fireworks use to Matariki, in the middle of winter when it is dark by 6 pm.  It is a long wait up for kids on 5 November with it not getting properly dark (in southern New Zealand at least) until 10 pm.

If fireworks are banned because they can cause harm what else could be petitioned? A ban on bikes, scooters and skateboards? Kids often get harmed when using them. Ban TV and computers and mobile phones? They have harmful effects.

Leave a comment


  1. artcroft

     /  13th December 2018

    Up here in Auckland, fireworks are used to celebrate Guy Fawkes, Chinese New Year and Diwali. Will the law ban personal fireworks for all these events or just the celebration that’s of European origin?

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  13th December 2018

      The ban will be for private fireworks, I assume.

      Fido has lost his terror of them, but it was a nightmare all the time that the fireworks were on until this year. One can’t train horses out of their terror, and it’s sheer chance that Fido was desensitised to firework noise as well as thunder.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  13th December 2018

        There were so many fires this year that that alone should be the thing that makes people say that we can’t let morons have these things.

        There are other things that people can’t legally buy.

        The black market will be unlikely to happen; it would be obvious who had them.

  2. Zedd

     /  13th December 2018

    I dont want to see them banned.. just creates a black-market (as with DRUGS) but the shops, should perhaps take charge & be required to ‘advise’ customers they are for a specific celebration DAY & not just an excuse to make loud sounds for a week before & after.. childish behaviour :/

  3. Gezza

     /  13th December 2018

    If they were banned except for public displays on New Year’s Eve or other special one off events I’d have no problems with it.

  4. kluelis

     /  14th December 2018

    Only allow trained professionals to set off fireworks at specific safe sites.


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