Night skies will light up in an explosion of colours across the globe, but there will be no scheduled New Year’s Eve fireworks display for Ballarat.
And if you’re planning on a fireworks display of your own, you could risk hefty fines or even imprisonment.
Senior Sergeant Barry Hills said illegal fireworks were “very dangerous” and police were requesting the community to be vigilant, use common sense and avoid them.
“Once they hit the air they are uncontrollable and sparks can generate fires,” he said.
While illegal fireworks were not a common occurrence in Ballarat, the ramifications could be enormous, Senior Sergeant Hills said.
“There are heavy penalties, heavy fines or imprisonment - it's taken quite seriously,” he said.
District 15 Operations officer Alfred Mason said all fireworks and firecrackers required a permit and to apply for a permit a pyrotechnician’s licence was needed.
“Lighting fireworks without a permit is illegal because of the risk or the residual risk of lighting a fire,” he said.
“People from older generations would all know people that have been burnt or scarred from doing what they thought was just a bit of fun.”
On New Year’s Eve last year a man escaped serious injury after a firework was discharged near his head at Pykes Creek.
The Courier reported the man had cuts to the head and burns to the face. He went to Bacchus Marsh hospital before being transported to Ballarat Base Hospital in a stable condition.
On New Year’s Day across the state, the Country Fire Authority responded to 19 grass and scrub fires caused by fireworks and flares, including in Flinders, Clunes and Eaglehawk.
RSPCA has warned pet owners loud noises and flashing lights, such as fireworks, could trigger a fearful reaction in many animals and may cause them to try to escape.
If fireworks can be heard, the organisation suggests pet owners to settle animals in a quiet room with as few windows as possible, secure shut all fixed enclosures, secure boundary fences and gates, and scatter treats to keep the animal distracted.
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