SHARJAH // People looking to celebrate the start of Eid Al Fitr with a bang have been advised to attend official displays instead of buying illegal and potentially dangerous fireworks.
Fireworks set off as part of festivities to mark the end of Ramadan have the potential to turn a celebration into a tragedy, warned police.
To help make Eid as safe as possible for residents, officers in Sharjah are stepping up their annual crackdown on the sale of illegal fireworks. "It is forbidden to sell, promote, buy, keep or transport any fireworks or other similar explosive materials without a licence from the security bodies concerned," said Col Sultan Al Khayal, the director of media and public relations at Sharjah Police.
"A crackdown campaign on the sale of fireworks is always launched at the advent of any festive season to secure the safety of residents from the consequences of lighting fireworks in their homes," he said.
Last week, a large amount of fireworks was seized and the five men selling them - four Emiratis and a Pakistani - were arrested in four separate operations, said Col Al Khayal.
Col Al Khayal added people who deal in illegal fireworks promote them mostly using BlackBerry messenger.
There have been no deaths caused by fireworks so far this year, but a spate of injuries, including burns, have been reported recently.
Officers have advised parents to take their children to public displays rather than buying fireworks to use at home.
In Sharjah, displays will be held at Al Qasba on the first day of Eid and another at the Al Majaz waterfront on August 10, said a spokesman for Shurooq.
Sharjah police have urged the public to cooperate by reporting anyone suspected of having fireworks illegally during the festive season by calling 800151 or 999 or 06562222.