What is the best thing about Lunar New Year?
Is it the glorious snacks such as bak kwas and pineapple tarts?
Or the scintillating red packets that are replete with cold hard
Maybe it’s the annual mahjong session played among your family member.
But wait, what about firecrackers?
I am pretty sure you would have seen firecrackers used as decos, but did you know that once upon a time, firecrackers were actually legal in Singapore?
But before I cut right into it, do you know the significance of these loud but bedazzling thingummies?
The history of firecrackers
Long before our time, there was a monster called nian and it would come out during New Year’s Eve and ravage a village by devouring villagers and destroying their homes.
They soon found out the monster’s weakness.
One day, when they were burning bamboo to keep themselves warm, they noticed that nian wouldn’t enter the village.
They realised that it was frightened by the cracking noise of the burning bamboo.
In fact, the Chinese name for firecrackers is actually baozhu which literally means exploding bamboos.
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Why are fireworks banned in Singapore
Firecrackers were used for several auspicious occasions such as weddings and new business ventures before it was banned.
In 1968, the government started implementing regulations as it became a public safety issue and the Dangerous Fireworks Act was implemented on 1 Aug 1972 after a deadly debacle in 1970.
It was the Chinese New Year season when 6 people were killed, 25 people were injured and a total of $560,390 worth of properties were damaged.
So that is why we don’t get to see firecrackers in action these days.
Alternatively, you can always find videos of it on Youtube and play it during CNY coz’ technically, all you need is the sound to ward of nian. 😉
With that said, if you come across firecrackers “cracking”, chances are, they might have gotten a permit.
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This article was first published on goodyfeed.com
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