Eight detained for letting off fireworks in Berlin ban zone

Eight people have been detained for letting off fireworks in the street in one of Berlin’s New Year’s Eve firework prohibition zones, police said on Sunday.

Several groups of people gathered on Saturday afternoon and evening on Pallasstrasse, in the Schoeneberg neighbourhood, and started lighting the fireworks in the street, the police said.

A total of 57 people were searched. Police seized a firework battery and six firework fountains, as well as drugs including cannabis and cocaine.

Plain-clothes police had noted disturbances including “a major explosion of a spherical object” which was followed by several smaller explosions.

They fled from the explosion and resulting sparks, along with several pedestrians. Two cars were damaged by the fireworks.

Fireworks are generally only available in Germany around New Year and are only allowed to be set off by private individuals on December 31 and early on January 1.

They will be banned in three areas of Berlin this year. The other two are the party mile stretching out from the Brandenburg Gate and the central square of Alexanderplatz.

A number of German cities are implementing partial bans on fireworks during the New Year holiday. Surveys show an increasing number of Germans favour banning fireworks, both for safety and environmental reasons.

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