Hamilton bans selling and using fireworks until July 4

News May 14, 2020 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton has banned the sale and use of fireworks, including sparklers, and shooting off rockets in homeowners’ backyards, until July 4.

“This is a temporary ban,” said Fire Chief Dave Cunliffe May 13. “It does create issues of large gatherings. This is the city being prudent.”

Cunliffe said the city’s Emergency Operations Centre requested the fire department stop issuing permits for the sale of fireworks about a “week and a half ago.”

It was up to council to ban the use of fireworks under its fireworks and administrative penalties bylaw, said city lawyer Nicole Auty.

The ban, in a close 8 to 6 vote comes days before the Victoria Day holiday weekend where residents usually shoot off fireworks, and a week after the city cancelled Canada Day events, including an annual firework display at Bayfront Park July 1.

Cunliffe said modern fireworks are like “mini-explosives” that need a large area, such as a park or street, to be set off with reasonable clearance. But when people do that, it attracts large gatherings of residents as well as complaints from neighbours.

“It’s about trying to alleviate some of the issues of the past,” he said. “It’s trying to maintain the safety of our residents.”

Under the province’s Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, the public can be fined up to $750 for gatherings of more than five people.

Director of Licensing Ken Leendertse said there will be a slew of bylaw officers and a “noise” team out over the weekend patrolling for violations of the fireworks bylaw.

Flamborough Coun. Judi Partridge said there have been “questions” among residents whether they can use fireworks in their own backyards. In the past there have been people setting off fireworks to celebrate birthdays and anniversaries, she said.

“It’s not permitted, and we need to make that clear,” she said. “It has a terrible effect on some of our pets.”

She would even support a ban on the use of fireworks throughout the year, except for special occasions.

But a few councillors questioned the need to ban firework displays because residents need, especially during these difficult times, to have some fun.

“We need that celebration,” said Glanbrook Coun. Brenda Johnson. “I can watch all the fireworks sitting on my front porch. I don’t need to gather together. Neighbours don’t need to gather together.”

Stoney Creek Coun. Brad Clark also questioned the timing of the ban. He said at a time when neighbours are lining up along their streets banging pots and pans in support of first responders, why not allow a fireworks display?

“I’m struggling to understand why now?”

Mountain Coun. Esther Pauls also questioned the benefit of fining residents who let their children run around with sparklers in their backyards. She said there will be some neighbours who will “rat” on people who have sparklers.

“It has to be clear,” she said.

Cunliffe said sparklers are classified by the federal government as a firework and are subject to the ban.

Meanwhile, the Dundas Valley Sunrise Rotary Club, which holds an annual firework display at the Dundas Driving Park, is holding a virtual presentation this weekend. A four-minute video of fireworks will be broadcast on Cable 14 at 9 p.m. May 17.

The fireworks event usually raises about $15,000 every year.

Sparks fly over Hamilton's fireworks ban

News May 14, 2020 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton has banned the sale and use of fireworks, including sparklers, and shooting off rockets in homeowners’ backyards, until July 4.

“This is a temporary ban,” said Fire Chief Dave Cunliffe May 13. “It does create issues of large gatherings. This is the city being prudent.”

Cunliffe said the city’s Emergency Operations Centre requested the fire department stop issuing permits for the sale of fireworks about a “week and a half ago.”

It was up to council to ban the use of fireworks under its fireworks and administrative penalties bylaw, said city lawyer Nicole Auty.

Related Content

The ban, in a close 8 to 6 vote comes days before the Victoria Day holiday weekend where residents usually shoot off fireworks, and a week after the city cancelled Canada Day events, including an annual firework display at Bayfront Park July 1.

Cunliffe said modern fireworks are like “mini-explosives” that need a large area, such as a park or street, to be set off with reasonable clearance. But when people do that, it attracts large gatherings of residents as well as complaints from neighbours.

“It’s about trying to alleviate some of the issues of the past,” he said. “It’s trying to maintain the safety of our residents.”

Under the province’s Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, the public can be fined up to $750 for gatherings of more than five people.

Director of Licensing Ken Leendertse said there will be a slew of bylaw officers and a “noise” team out over the weekend patrolling for violations of the fireworks bylaw.

Flamborough Coun. Judi Partridge said there have been “questions” among residents whether they can use fireworks in their own backyards. In the past there have been people setting off fireworks to celebrate birthdays and anniversaries, she said.

“It’s not permitted, and we need to make that clear,” she said. “It has a terrible effect on some of our pets.”

She would even support a ban on the use of fireworks throughout the year, except for special occasions.

But a few councillors questioned the need to ban firework displays because residents need, especially during these difficult times, to have some fun.

“We need that celebration,” said Glanbrook Coun. Brenda Johnson. “I can watch all the fireworks sitting on my front porch. I don’t need to gather together. Neighbours don’t need to gather together.”

Stoney Creek Coun. Brad Clark also questioned the timing of the ban. He said at a time when neighbours are lining up along their streets banging pots and pans in support of first responders, why not allow a fireworks display?

“I’m struggling to understand why now?”

Mountain Coun. Esther Pauls also questioned the benefit of fining residents who let their children run around with sparklers in their backyards. She said there will be some neighbours who will “rat” on people who have sparklers.

“It has to be clear,” she said.

Cunliffe said sparklers are classified by the federal government as a firework and are subject to the ban.

Meanwhile, the Dundas Valley Sunrise Rotary Club, which holds an annual firework display at the Dundas Driving Park, is holding a virtual presentation this weekend. A four-minute video of fireworks will be broadcast on Cable 14 at 9 p.m. May 17.

The fireworks event usually raises about $15,000 every year.

Sparks fly over Hamilton's fireworks ban

News May 14, 2020 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton has banned the sale and use of fireworks, including sparklers, and shooting off rockets in homeowners’ backyards, until July 4.

“This is a temporary ban,” said Fire Chief Dave Cunliffe May 13. “It does create issues of large gatherings. This is the city being prudent.”

Cunliffe said the city’s Emergency Operations Centre requested the fire department stop issuing permits for the sale of fireworks about a “week and a half ago.”

It was up to council to ban the use of fireworks under its fireworks and administrative penalties bylaw, said city lawyer Nicole Auty.

Related Content

The ban, in a close 8 to 6 vote comes days before the Victoria Day holiday weekend where residents usually shoot off fireworks, and a week after the city cancelled Canada Day events, including an annual firework display at Bayfront Park July 1.

Cunliffe said modern fireworks are like “mini-explosives” that need a large area, such as a park or street, to be set off with reasonable clearance. But when people do that, it attracts large gatherings of residents as well as complaints from neighbours.

“It’s about trying to alleviate some of the issues of the past,” he said. “It’s trying to maintain the safety of our residents.”

Under the province’s Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, the public can be fined up to $750 for gatherings of more than five people.

Director of Licensing Ken Leendertse said there will be a slew of bylaw officers and a “noise” team out over the weekend patrolling for violations of the fireworks bylaw.

Flamborough Coun. Judi Partridge said there have been “questions” among residents whether they can use fireworks in their own backyards. In the past there have been people setting off fireworks to celebrate birthdays and anniversaries, she said.

“It’s not permitted, and we need to make that clear,” she said. “It has a terrible effect on some of our pets.”

She would even support a ban on the use of fireworks throughout the year, except for special occasions.

But a few councillors questioned the need to ban firework displays because residents need, especially during these difficult times, to have some fun.

“We need that celebration,” said Glanbrook Coun. Brenda Johnson. “I can watch all the fireworks sitting on my front porch. I don’t need to gather together. Neighbours don’t need to gather together.”

Stoney Creek Coun. Brad Clark also questioned the timing of the ban. He said at a time when neighbours are lining up along their streets banging pots and pans in support of first responders, why not allow a fireworks display?

“I’m struggling to understand why now?”

Mountain Coun. Esther Pauls also questioned the benefit of fining residents who let their children run around with sparklers in their backyards. She said there will be some neighbours who will “rat” on people who have sparklers.

“It has to be clear,” she said.

Cunliffe said sparklers are classified by the federal government as a firework and are subject to the ban.

Meanwhile, the Dundas Valley Sunrise Rotary Club, which holds an annual firework display at the Dundas Driving Park, is holding a virtual presentation this weekend. A four-minute video of fireworks will be broadcast on Cable 14 at 9 p.m. May 17.

The fireworks event usually raises about $15,000 every year.