Sydney just welcomed the new decade with grand fireworks show. The New South Wales (NSW) Rural Fire Service granted the organisers of Sydney's iconic fireworks display a special exemption from a total fire ban covering the region. The NSW region has recently been ravaged by bushfires.
Take a look at the fireworks displays below
Happy New Year from Australia!— Kittakee 🐯 [DLive.tv] (@Kittakee) December 31, 2019
May your 2020 be frikking amazing, whatever your goals may be. pic.twitter.com/4smmo15Lop
The Sydney Harbour fireworks have been approved to proceed tomorrow.— NSW RFS (@NSWRFS) December 30, 2019
The NSW Rural Fire Service and Fire and Rescue NSW are assessing a number of other Total Fire Ban exemptions.#nswrfs #nswfires #frnsw pic.twitter.com/C3QtJtF5K8
Earlier, some people were of the opinion that the fireworks display should have been cancelled given the fact that Australia is still gripped with intense bushfires. Online petitions had been set up calling for the fireworks shows to be cancelled and had garnered more than 2,70,000 signatures. But there were some social media users that understood that the fireworks displays could not have been cancelled and that cancelling them would mean wasting the money already spent on the fireworks.
What a weird time, place, and way to ring in the new year... 2020 kicks off with over-the-top NYE fireworks uncomfortably accompanied by fire warnings across #Australia 🤯 #SydNYE #sydneyfireworks #NYE2020 pic.twitter.com/vWBUKVOzKe— Sradda (@sraddathapa) December 31, 2019
One social media user pointed out that money had already been spent on the fireworks and the manpower needed to set it up and thus calling for the fireworks to be cancelled would not be practical.
Several councils around Sydney, including Parramatta and Campbelltown, reportedly cancelled their fireworks event. Bob Dwyer, lord mayor of the City of Parramatta while speaking to an international media outlet said that the council was not granted an exemption for its display due to extreme temperatures, smoke, dust and poor air quality, extremely dry conditions at Parramatta Park. According to reports, the Northern Beaches Council has also cancelled its Dee Why fireworks, further, the council had also cancelled the Bayview fireworks display. Campbelltown and Liverpool also scrapped their fireworks.
Meanwhile, wildfires burning across Australia's two most-populous states trapped residents of a seaside town in apocalyptic conditions destroyed many properties and caused at least two fatalities. On the New South Wales south coast, the fire was seen moving toward the Princes Highway, a road linking Sydney and Melbourne. Thick smoke from fires in the region plunged some towns into near darkness.
Some residents fled to lakes and beaches to escape the fire threat. New South Wales Police confirmed on Tuesday that two men, believed to be father and son, died in a house in the wildfire-ravaged southeast town of Cobargo, while there are fears for another man missing.