Switzerland: First game with legal pyrotechnics in November?

source: NZZ.ch

Switzerland: First game with legal pyrotechnics in November? FC Zurich vs Servette – this may become a historical fixture no matter the score. If fans manage to get approval from police and fire dept, they’ll be allowed to light pyrotechnics legally first time in history. This is possible after Zurich passed new laws on the issue.

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As Neue Zürcher Zeitung reports, hot issue of legal flares inside football grounds is burning up in Switzerland right now. Both Swiss Football League and Conference of Police Commissioners (KKJPD) are very disturbed by the idea introduced in Zurich.

Local authorities have just allowed supporters to light flares inside the renowned Letzigrund stadium – the same one where Euro 2008 took place and where supporters also obtained the approval for switching some seats into standing.

Of course the approval is not unconditional. In order to host a pyro-show fans first have to get approval from both the police and fire department. Interestingly, while police officers seem to be rather keen on the idea, firefighters aren’t as they would be the ones responsible in case anything happens.

To ease their worries, new law allows to light only certified, approved pyrotechnic materials and only in some, limited sections of the stadium, mostly in the South Stand (or Südkurve).

Away section is still subject to pyro-ban, which may lead to ironic situations in which during one game some fans may do a legal choreography while others would be committing an offence if doing the same.

At this point, with nationwide interest in the pilot program of Zurich, it seems that supporters should be doing all they can to pass the ‘test’ of responsibility if they are to open a path for similar changes in other cantons, which is what SFL and KKJPD are fearing in their statements. 

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