01/04/24 Prison for parents responsible for serious injuries of children due to use of pyrotechnics!

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Animal Friends Croatia wrote to The Ministry of the Interior to demand that fireworks be allowed only for New Year’s

- More days when pyrotechnics are allowed increases stress accumulation and the risk of injury.

Animal Friends Croatia sent a letter to the Minister of the Interior, Davor Božinović, and demanded that the Ministry limit the use of permitted fireworks of Categories F2 and F3 on New Year’s while maintaining the necessary and commendable complete ban on firecrackers and bandoliers. They believe that parents who buy firecrackers and other dangerous pyrotechnics, whose usage can cause hand or sight loss, for their children should be sanctioned for violating the child’s rights. This, in the case of a serious bodily injury to a child, is punishable by a prison sentence of one to eight years. Parents of a severely injured child should also be reported to the competent welfare center.

They stated that the violation of the legal ban on the use of firecrackers and bandolier firecrackers, and the use of permitted fireworks from December 27 to January 1, has already caused animal deaths, serious injuries to children, destroyed properties, polluted air and it has brought a lot of stress to people. However, for the second year in a row, since the total ban on firecrackers and bandoliers, positive results are quite noticeable, considering the lowest number of injured people and reported damages. Thanks to the legal ban, there were also fewer fireworks than in previous years. At the same time, a legal ban seems to be the best education.

Although the legal ban is violated and during the holidays, mostly children are injured, it is terrible that cats, dogs and birds were killed by pyrotechnics. If we hadn’t banned firecrackers and bandoliers, and if they were available as they were before the ban, the number of victims would have been significantly higher. By purchasing pyrotechnics, parents must not allow their children to use them as toys. We believe that one lost child’s hand and one dead animal due to the use of pyrotechnics are too many already. That’s why the legal ban on the use of firecrackers and bandoliers and the control of its implementation is the only thing that prevents even greater suffering of people and animals,” points out Snježana Klopotan Kačavenda, project coordinator at Animal Friends Croatia.

She adds that the Ministry of Interior should take a step further to reduce the damage caused by pyrotechnics: “Just as firecrackers and bandoliers are rightfully banned all year round, all other pyrotechnics should also be prohibited on December 27, 28, 29 and 30. More days when pyrotechnics are allowed increases the chance of dangerous experimentation with pyrotechnics and an increased number of injuries, material damages, dead animals, environment pollution, trash in parks and streets… On the days before the New Year, when nothing is celebrated, the constant use of pyrotechnics contributes to the accumulation of stress in both humans and animals. When the noise lasts for days, it is more difficult to endure it, while it also threatens the ability to work for those who work the next day.”

Animal Friends reminds us that birds and other wild animals have no peace for days because of pyrotechnics and they are more exhausted – if they didn’t die already, they will die on New Year’s Eve because they were already restlessly flying around nights before, and then in the end, they are literally finished off by the New Year’s Eve fireworks. “Due to the usage of firecrackers and fireworks already from mid-December, when the sale begins, and especially from December 27, when the usage begins, there is a higher probability of death for dogs and cats who are scared of loud pyrotechnics. For days, their stress and fear accumulate every time pyrotechnics are set off so that by the end their hearts fail”, warns Klopotan Kačavenda.

She explained that the same happens to the dogs in the yards and wild animals whose hearts stop beating because of the terror of pyrotechnics: “The pyrotechnics torture lasts for days for sick and elderly people, for parents of children with autism, for people with PTSD, heart patients and other vulnerable citizen groups. If the use of permitted pyrotechnics was allowed only from December 31 to January 1, there would be a lot less pain, suffering and victims, and it would be easier to control the ban of firecrackers and bandoliers. Material damage and environmental pollution due to the use of pyrotechnics would also be reduced.”

Animal Friends Croatia states that people want peace at least on those days when nothing is celebrated. They expect the Ministry of Interior to, in addition to controlling the ban on the use of firecrackers and bandoliers, to limit the use of other pyrotechnics to December 31 and January 1, that is, during the New Year’s Eve, and that the sale of pyrotechnics starts on December 27, as they have already done many other countries.

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