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Illegal fire crackers pose serious risk

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31 Dec 2012
Victoria’s fire services are warning the community about the dangers of illegal fireworks ahead of New Year’s Eve celebrations this evening.

The warning comes after a man received serious facial and head burns following an incident involving illegal fire crackers at Mooroopna on Christmas Day. CFA also attended a small grassfire as a result of the fireworks.

CFA Chief Officer Euan Ferguson said the incident highlighted the dangers involved with illegal fireworks.

“Illegal fireworks not only pose a serious risk to lives, they can also start significant fires,” he said.

“While many people see illegal fireworks as an innocent celebration, they can cause serious issues for fire services. All these fires and injuries are preventable.”

CFA and MFB are particularly concerned about the risk this year with high fuel-loads in forests and dry grass right across Victoria.

MFB Acting Chief Officer Peter Rau said there are plenty of legal fireworks displays across the state so there is no need for people to use illegal fireworks.

“It’s an unnecessary demand on MFB and CFA services at a time of year when the fire risk is already heightened,” he said.

“People need to be sensible and recognise the risks – don’t spoil what should be a festive holiday season for everyone.”

People should also be aware if they are caught with illegal fireworks they can face severe penalties including jail. If you wish to inform authorities of illegal fireworks activities phone Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000 or police on 000.

MFB and CFA encourages anyone wanting to see fireworks to attend official community events hosted by licensed and approved pyrotechnicians.

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