For the first time, a majority has been achieved in the Lower House of the Dutch Parliament in favour of banning dangerous fireworks around New Year’s Eve.
The parties that came together to form this coalition did not include the Prime Minister’s party, VVD, but did include the two other coalition parties, D66 and ChristenUnie. Opposition parties such as GroenLinks, Partij voor de Dieren, SP, PvdA, 50 Plus, SGP, DENK, and lone MP Van Kooten-Arisse all gave their support to the ban as well.
Why is this ban suddenly being seriously discussed? Well, over New Year’s Eve this year, there were several deaths and 1300 injuries, an increase of 100 people since last year. Furthermore, a police officer was kicked in the face over a fireworks dispute, and an elderly man was beaten up for asking some teenagers to take their fireworks elsewhere. All in all, it was a chaotic night.
It is not yet fully clear what constitutes dangerous fireworks. The leader of the PvdA, Asscher, says the ban should include flares and bangers. He wants the police chief, Akerboom, to be involved in the discussion, after his calls for a firework ban after the holidays.
One concern is whether a ban will be possible to carry out: the police do not have enough manpower to be everywhere on New Year’s Eve, after all. Asscher hopes Akerboom will be able to suggest ways that carrying out the ban will be feasible for police.
Will this ban succeed? What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.
Feature image: picjumbo_com/Pixabay