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China defuses firework safety risks ahead of Spring Festival

Updated: Jan 31,2019 7:04 AM     Xinhua

BEIJING — Chinese authorities have conducted firework quality checks and cracked down on illegal sales and storage of fireworks to ensure safety ahead of the upcoming Spring Festival.

The State Administration for Market Regulation has carried out a random inspection on fireworks produced in six provincial-level regions and found that 15.3 percent of fireworks manufactured by 150 companies were substandard, according to a statement from the regulator.

The ratio was down 11.7 percentage points from a year earlier, the statement said.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Public Security has conducted a nationwide inspection on firework safety and uncovered a number of cases of selling or storing fireworks illegally in such provinces as Hebei, Liaoning, Jiangsu and Zhejiang, China National Radio (CNR) reported.

Setting off fireworks is a tradition to celebrate the Spring Festival, or Chinese Lunar New Year. Local governments have restricted the use of fireworks in recent years to reduce air pollution and address safety concerns.

More than 800 cities in China have imposed firework bans so far, the CNR reported.

This year, Beijing citizens need to provide identity cards to purchase fireworks, local authorities announced last week, as part of efforts to ensure safety.

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