New Year’s Eve explosive tradition survives in Amsterdam

The whole city is covered in dead fireworks Credit: Stijn Bokhove flickr

AFTER months of deliberation, the Amsterdam Council has decided not to issue a ban on residents letting off their own fireworks during this year’s New Year celebrations (due to fears about coronavirus contamination) as it would be too difficult to police.

The Council explained its decision by saying that it would simply be impractical to expect wardens to try to enforce a firework ban as well as social distancing regulations and the reality is that people will continue the New Year’s Eve tradition regardless.

There was some thought of trying to introduce locally organised celebrations, but nothing concrete has been decided upon till now and those who sell huge numbers of all types of fireworks in the run up to the New Year have threatened to take legal action.


One option being considered by the Dutch government is to completely ban the more dangerous fireworks which includes some bangers, crackers and rockets and this could be in place by the end of the year.

Whilst many enjoy the huge explosion of noise and colour to welcome in the New Year, others point out that in 2019 two people died and 1,300 were treated for firework related injuries across the country.

Indiscriminate letting off of these fireworks by often drunk revellers caused €500,000 of damage to property in Amsterdam alone and the clean up bill is also significant.


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