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Explosives Inspectorate | Alert | No.105 V 1 | 12 August 2022

Close proximity fireworks breach safety exclusion zone

What happened?

A fireworks display at the Ekka RNA showground (Brisbane showgrounds) last week projected fireworks beyond the designated exclusion zone, with some fireworks narrowly missing spectators seated in the main arena.

How did it happen?

A number of close proximity Comets were positioned on the outer edge of the arena, at a safe distance from spectators. During the show, the effect of six of these Comets exceeded the overall exclusion zone as they had been positioned on an angle. The fireworks operator was able to immediately isolate the remaining fireworks from the display sequence.


The following recommendations are based on early observations as the nature and cause of this incident is still under investigation:

  • Fireworks contractors should check their holdings and quarantine Single Shot 30mm Comet, named ‘Blue Coco Tail (Plastic Base)’
  • Limit the use of projecting close proximity fireworks to the vertical firing position, unless testing is undertaken prior to display to confirm the trajectory of the effect. The trajectory should not exceed the proposed designated exclusion zone.

Firework malfunctions or fireworks exceeding manufacturers specifications should be quarantined to prevent further incident and reported using the online Explosives Incident Report at: Explosives Incident Notification Approved Form

Investigations are ongoing and further information may be published as it becomes available. The information in this publication is what is known at the time of writing.

We issue Safety Notices to draw attention to the occurrence of a serious incident, raise awareness of risks, and prompt assessment of your existing controls.

Authorised by Dr Snezana Bajic - Deputy Chief Inspector – Explosives

Contact: Vishwa Bhushan, Principal Inspector of Explosives , +61 7 3199 8023

Issued by Resources Safety & Health Queensland

Safety: This information is issued to promote safety through experience. It is not to be taken as a statement of law and must not be construed to waive or modify any legal obligation.