Pirie New Year's Eve celebrations cancelled amid COVID-19 restrictions

SKYSHOW: Fireworks light up the night sky at the foreshore in this photograph by Liz Dunkley, of Port Pirie and Districts Photography Club. The skyshow greeted the New Year.
SKYSHOW: Fireworks light up the night sky at the foreshore in this photograph by Liz Dunkley, of Port Pirie and Districts Photography Club. The skyshow greeted the New Year.

In light of COVID-19 restrictions, the Port Pirie Regional Council has made the unfortunate decision to cancel this years New Year's Eve event.

While the region has been fortunate to be relatively isolated from the health impacts of COVID-19, the region is still bound by COVID-19 restrictions as directed by the state government.

The restrictions are difficult and costly to enforce on an event that attracts an estimated 8000 to 10,000 people, as well as groups congregating outside the event area to watch the fireworks.

Timeframes around submitting COVID management plans for approval and making any amendments needed around the Christmas period would also create difficulties, as well as the expectation that the management plan would likely restrict attendance numbers.

The restrictions mean that council would be responsible for ensuring adequate social distancing by all people and groups, being seated and no dancing at all times, which would be difficult to monitor after dark and when people have consumed alcohol.

As a result of the restrictions, council has decided not to proceed with the event.

Council is exploring alternate options to support the community celebrating the Christmas and New Year period and make a positive contribution to the mental wellbeing of the Port Pirie community.

These options include the installation of additional lighting and street decorations in the Port Pirie CBD and regional townships.

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