Brampton City Council recommended banning all private use of fireworks after they were blasted with a record number of complaints during last month’s Diwali celebrations.
Yesterday new councillor Denis Keenan forwarded a motion to ban all purchases and discharges of fireworks by private citizens. Previously, Brampton residents could buy fireworks in the city and launch them until 11 p.m. on Victoria Day, Canada Day, Diwali and New Year’s Eve.
However, these celebrations resulted in 1,500 complaints about fireworks flooding the city. Roughly 1,000 of these calls came in in October during Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights.
In total, these complaints led to $38,500 in fireworks fines this year. Additionally, Brampton Fire has responded to 20 fires connected to fireworks, costing the city $20,000.
The new by-law, set to be ratified on November 28, will boost these fines to a minimum of $500 for discharging fireworks and $1,000 for selling them.
However, the ban will not apply to city-run events and firework use during filming. One of these city events will be a new Diwali celebration with fireworks, similar to Brampton’s Canada Day and New Year’s events.
“The safety of our residents is of utmost importance to the City of Brampton. We have heard the concerns of our community regarding the Fireworks By-law, and it is our goal that by amending it, we will all enjoy our holidays safely and without disruption, excessive noise or debris,” said Mayor Patrick Brown, “I thank everyone for making their voices heard on this topic, and look forward to welcoming residents to our first annual Diwali celebration event next year!”
Keenan said, “While it is important that our residents get to celebrate holidays throughout the year with friends and loved ones, we must do so with respect and safety top of mind.”
The ban is set to be ratified on November 28.
With files from Ryan Rumbolt.