This report from Chris:

Just to let you know had a great evening yesterday (Saturday) Fired the complete stash off... will write a more in-depth post soon, but a couple of things for people to be aware of:

- Firstly, one of my (ten) Shellscape Skyshock rockets detonated at about 15ft above ground level, instead of the usual 100ft+, deafeningly loud, and also dangerous, as it expelled burning fragments at high speed to ground level.

- Worse still, one of my Lunig Ball rockets (Multicoloured one I think) completely short circuited the motor and detonated the main payload at ground level. Very fortunately there were no injuries, both firers had their backs to the rocket as they made their retreat from lighting them, and the crowd were a good 25 metres away.

However, both I and my assistant firer were somewhat shaken up, especially as both these events happened in the opening volley of the display!!

Apart from these two opening incidents, the rest of the display went off superbly well, and when I have watched the video through, I will give a more detailed post on my opinion of the pyro. One thing that has to be said though, is that the F1 and F3 fan cakes from Shellscape are TRULY SUPERB!

Have a great and safe display, everyone who has still let the jubilee stash go!

Cheers, Chris.

Pyro Pete says: I've had a look at your incredible pictures and video which follow below. I must congratulate you on your safety because despite two major failures your crowd were 101% safe and from the reactions even thought the effects were intentional. It saddens us here at UKFR that when someone has a similar accident in an unsafe setting, and causes an injury, it is widely publicised and used against fireworks. Yet you manage the same thing with an eye for safety and should be congratulated by proving that even when the biggest cat 3 rockets fail, if you follow the instructions, you're safe.

Above: Wow, a Lunig ball rocket detonates at ground level.

Above: Check out the tree for scale. This is why these are skyfillers (in the video clip, the others launch OK). I know to a lot of people images like these are worrying. We include them here with pride because they prove that even the BIGGEST cat 3 rocket, if used with common sense safety, does not pose a risk even in a worst case scenario like the one shown above.

Above: Heheh... the crowd thought it was great!

Above: This is a stunning picture and ironically is a brilliant advert for Shellscape's rocket because it shows that it doesn't just BANG, it creates a massive sphere of glitter too. Notice a) no spectators nearby (even the cameraman is a long way back) and b) the firer is safely away. An incident like this will make most firers colour their pants, but we point out again that Chris and his firers enjoyed the above two mis-fires in their opening sequence and NO-ONE was injured. Well done Chris.

Downloadable Windows Media video clips
Click here to watch a clip of the Lunig Ball rocket explosion. File size: 215Kb
Click here to watch a clip of the Shellscape rocket explosion. File size: 257Kb

Pictures and reports courtesy of, and with thanks to, Chris Hartley.


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