Jersey's Home Affairs Minister promises tighter restrictions on sale of fireworks

The Minister was responding a petition to "make fireworks with a 'bang' illegal" to prevent animals becoming distressed. Credit: PA

Jersey's Home Affairs Minister says tighter restrictions will be brought in on the sale of fireworks during her term of office.

Deputy Helen Miles was responding to a petition from an islander calling for "fireworks with a bang" to be banned to stop unnecessary stress to animals.

She said no fireworks louder than 120dB are currently allowed to be imported to Jersey, but as manufacturers do not use a standardised way of rating how noisy pyrotechnic products are, it is unlikely the requested ban could be enforced.

Deputy Miles says while retailers can market products as "quiet", "silent" or "low noise", that can't be enforced in law.

She added that reforms to the law which allows fireworks to be sold were due to be proposed a few years ago, but were never implemented as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Minister has committed to modernising Jersey's explosives law by the end of her term of office, strengthening controls on the supply and possession of fireworks.

However, that would not be able to distinguish between "quiet" and "loud" fireworks.

Helen Miles says there has to be a balance between peaceful enjoyment and infringing on anyone's right to celebrate.

Deputy Miles says she would like to see tighter controls on the sale of fireworks - "especially larger and (most likely) louder" ones:

"A balance must be found between the right of people and animals to peaceful enjoyment and the right of individuals to celebrate events.

"There is certainly a strong argument that current regulatory arrangements are insufficient, and [I do] not support the current permissive arrangements for the direct sale of fireworks to the public."

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