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Birżebbuġa Landowners Find Active Fireworks In Fields, Raise Concerns On Proximity Of Release Area

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One of the owners explained how the fireworks are being released way too close to garigue fields, residents’ homes, protected carob trees and traditional rubble walls found nearby.

“This is a massive problem because we currently cannot enter our own fields and we were never even notified,” the other owner told Lovin Malta. 

“We had to relocate our animals, not to forget the danger it is imposing because the chosen area is next to a road,” he expressed.

“It is imposing danger on multiple residents as well as farmers, it’s not the first time that the valley caught on fire as a result of lack of attention from those setting off these fireworks,” he said.

After the first night, the landowners sent photos of the aftermath of the first round of fireworks, with both owners finding active fireworks. 

Lovin Malta is also informed that inspectors from the Environment and Resources Authority showed up on Monday to inform the people behind the fireworks that they should not be letting off fireworks from there. Nonetheless, the fireworks continued.

Upon receiving the report, Lovin Malta reached out to the police, which is the entity that releases permits for such activities. 

“Kindly note that the Police is regulated by Subsidiary Legislation (SL) 33.03 ‘Control of Fireworks and Other Explosives Regulations’, when issuing permits for letting off of fireworks,” a police spokesperson told Lovin Malta.

“If the applicant/s fulfil the requisites required, a permit is issued accordingly.”

Lovin Malta also reached out to the Environment and Resources Authority to enquire on the matter.

“ERA is not responsible for the issuance of fireworks permits. ERA has however been alerted about this case mainly due to trees in the vicinity,” ERA said in a statement.

“A site inspection by ERA confirmed that two areas are being used for the letting off of fireworks. ERA has instructed organisers to remove pipes for the discharge of aerial fireworks from close proximity to trees.”

“These instructions have been adhered to. In another area where safety concerns have been raised by organisers, ERA instructed that trees are showered with water prior to the discharge of fireworks and an additional water bowser/fire engine – other than that required by police permit – is to be on-site at all times.”

“Organisers have been instructed to take all necessary measures to prevent fires from the area and to ensure timely response in case of a fire incident.”

Have you ever encountered a similar issue with fireworks? 

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When Sasha (formerly known as Sasha Tas-Sigar) is not busy writing about environmental injustice, she's probably fighting for women's rights. Follow her at @saaxhaa on Instagram, and send her anything related to the environment, art, and women's rights at [email protected]

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