Maltese Fireworks Factories Rescue Plea
The Attorney General has appealed a landmark court judgment that could make a number of fireworks factories illegal, following on similar appeals by pyrotechnics enthusiasts.
In the appeal, the Attorney General said it was "disproportionate" that fireworks should be stopped in two feasts "just because one or two families' swimming pools get dirty".
"In Malta, we all put up with inconveniences because of the size of the island, like traffic, continuous construction, dust in the air, among other things but, since the Zammit Maempels live in a rural area, they don't have to put up with a lot of the inconveniences," the Attorney General said.
The case revolved around a complaint the Zammit Maempel family had made about fireworks let off close to their house for the feasts of St Helen and St Anthony in Birkirkara.
Permits for the fireworks had been issued, allowing them to be let off from areas closer to built-up zones than what the law actually stipulates. This could happen because the law defines the inhabited area as a place where more than 100 people live. The family contested this and won the case and the judge declared the legal definition null and void because it discriminated against people who lived in sparsely inhabited areas.
In the appeal, the Attorney General said the judge cited rulings that were based on an examination between serious environmental pollution and the respect of privacy, family, and home. The letting off of fireworks was certainly not serious environmental pollution nor was it continuous. Fireworks were very important to the island's traditions and religion and were also an integral part of the tourism economy because they attracted tourists during feasts.