A fireworks ban was in effect across the Netherlands last night, but in many places decorative fireworks went up in the air. It is unclear exactly how many fireworks were released into the air, but it is clear that the ban on fireworks was widely ignored.
“We don’t want to pass judgment on that,” police spokesman Robert Salome said. “However, this ban is in place for a reason. There are risks associated with the use of illegal fireworks, but that’s not what we police are about. This has to do with healthcare.”
Leo Groneveld of the Dutch Fireworks Association (BPN), the association of companies involved in fireworks, is amazed at the amount of fireworks. “I’m surprised by that.”
In “normal” years without fireworks being banned, he contacts various distributors and dealers to estimate the amount of fireworks to be set off. It wasn’t possible this time, but he still estimated that twice as many decorative fireworks were launched into the air as last year, when there was also a ban on fireworks.
The fireworks were no surprise to the police. Yesterday the ban on fireworks was expected to be widely ignored, because many groups of fireworks were intercepted. Nationwide, about 180,000 kilograms of illegal fireworks have been seized this year, a record number.
This is New Year’s Eve in pictures:
“Lifelong zombie fanatic. Hardcore web practitioner. Thinker. Music expert. Unapologetic pop culture scholar.”