Explosives

Explosives must be approved before they can be imported or manufactured in New Zealand.

All explosives are hazardous substances. You need to check to see if the explosive is legally approved for use in New Zealand before it can be imported.

Check the approved hazardous substances with controls database

You can also check the legislation to see if it is approved and find out what the the hazardous properties of explosives are.

Hazardous Substances (Fireworks, Safety Ammunition, and Other Explosives Transfer) Regulation - New Zealand Legislation website

Importing or manufacturing a new explosive

To manufacture or import a new explosive into New Zealand for the first time, you need to make an application for approval so we can assess the risks of the explosive and determine the rules (controls) around it.

Approvals to import or manufacture a hazardous substance for release

When your explosive is approved, you can apply for an Explosives Import Certificate. 

Apply for an explosives import certificate

However, since 1 October 2018, an import certificate is no longer required for:

  • explosives that do not require a controlled substance licence under the Health and Safety at Work (Hazardous Substances) Regulations 2017
  • novelty and noise-maker fireworks specified in regulation 4(2) of the Hazardous Substances (Fireworks) Regulations 2001, such as party poppers and Christmas crackers.

See the Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers) Notice 2015 (EPA Consolidation as of 6 September 2018) (pdf 537 KB)

Transhipments of explosives

A transhipment is where a hazardous substance is imported into New Zealand for the sole purpose of exporting it again within 20 working days. This includes goods which remain on a vessel or craft (including aircraft) or are put into storage prior to export.

If the explosives being transhipped are not approved or cannot meet the rules (requirements) placed on it, then you need to apply for a transhipment approval.

If you need a transhipment approval you need to apply at least one month before the substance is to be transhipped.

Apply for a transhipment

Retail fireworks

There are rules to do with the import, storage, and sale of retail fireworks. We’ve put together a factsheet and Code of Practice to help you understand your obligations.

Your guide to Selling Retail Fireworks (pdf 1.16MB)

Code of Practice for Retail Fireworks (pdf 118.15KB)

Importing retail fireworks

If you’re importing fireworks, you need to obtain an import certificate from us for each consignment.

Apply for an explosives import certificate

A sample of each consignment must also be tested for safety and have a certificate issued by or on behalf of the EPA. Please contact us if this is what you need to do.

You can email us at fireworks@epa.govt.nz

Testing of imported retail fireworks

All imported retail fireworks are required to be tested by an EPA approved fireworks certifier.

Check our register for information on the fireworks certifiers delegated by us to issue certificates for retail fireworks.

Outdoor firework displays

Outdoor pyrotechnic displays are closely regulated and there are a number or rules you need to know if you are planning to hold a display. More information about these rules is available from WorkSafe.

Pyrotechnic displays - WorkSafe website

Ports suitable for handling explosives

Selected ports in New Zealand have been assessed for their suitability for handling shipments of explosives. Check our register for information about which ports are suitable.

Register of certified firework testers Plus

 

Name and company

Aaron Donald: HazSubs Services Limited

Authorisations status

Active

Authorisations expiry

13/05/2021

Contact address

4D Target Court, Glenfield, Auckland 0627

Website

www.hazsubs.co.nz

Phone

09 443 3054

Mobile

021 511 291

Email

aaron@hazsubs.co.nz

Authorised to issue certificates for

All retail fireworks

 

Name and company

Grant Tattley: HazTec 2018 Limited

Authorisations status

Active

Authorisations expiry

30/06/2021

Contact address

165 Kowhai Road, Mairangi Bay, Auckland 0630

Website

haztec.co.nz

Phone

09 426 5902

Mobile

021 504 664

Email

grant@haztec.co.nz

Authorised to issue certificates for

All retail fireworks

 

Name and company

Peter Greenwood: Fiz Pop Compliance

Authorisations status

Active

Authorisations expiry

05/10/2019

Contact address

24 Kuku Street, Tangimoana

Mobile

027 537 5555

Email

fizpopcompliance@gmail.com

Authorised to issue certificates for

All retail fireworks

 

Name and company

Richard Gilkinson: HazSubs Services Limited

Authorisations status

Active

Authorisations expiry

13/05/2021

Contact address

4D Target Court, Glenfield, Auckland 0627

Website

www.hazsubs.co.nz

Phone

09 443 3054

Mobile

027 222 8095

Email

aaron@hazsubs.co.nz or Richard@hazsubs.co.nz

Authorised to issue certificates for

All retail fireworks

Ports suitable for handling explosives Plus

 

Recommended Maximum Quantities (NEQ) for Main Ports
Port Berth Specified Point Max Recommended NEQ (kg) when packed in ISO containers
      Class 1.1/1.5 Class 1.2 Class 1.3
Auckland

Fergusson

Freyberg

Freyberg

Jellicoe

Jellicoe

Bledisloe

Bledisloe

Outer

West outer

East outer

West outer

East outer

West outer

East outer

36,000

4,500

4,500

20,000

5,000

12,000

16,000

4,000

90

90

1,400

100

550

900

170,000

22,000

22,000

95,000

24,000

55,000

75,000

Onehunga LOLO   1,500 12 7,000
Tauranga

S. Point

S. Point

Berth 11

Berth 24

Berth 23

 

55,000

55,000

6,000

9,000

9,000

160

200,000

200,000

28,000

Napier Kirk. No. 5 Outer 59,000 10,000 200,000
N. Plymouth Blyde Outer 7,000 200 34,000
Wellington     Refer to CentrePort for quantity limits
Lyttleton Cashin Q   12,000 500 55,000
P Chalmers No 1   16,000 900 75,000
(as of January 2010)

Information about classes

There is no limit on the amount of class 1.4 explosives that can be handled provided a fire safety zone of at least 25 metres is maintained from all other goods. The designated transfer zone should be of radius 25 metres. However, consideration should be given to the type of explosive and quantity (i.e. the hazard presented) and any exposed sites to determine the appropriate transfer zone distance. Quantity-distance limits do not apply to retail fireworks that are controlled by the Hazardous Substances (Fireworks) Regulations 2001. Neither do they apply to safety ammunition (including pre-primed cartridges and primers) of classification 1.4S.

Propellant powders

Propellant powders in quantities greater than 500kg are classified as class 1.1C

Lyttleton Port Company

On application to Lyttleton Port Company, shipments of class 1.1 of up to 48,000 kg may be accepted depending on berth availability and case by case consideration.

Quantity limits for explosives handled at ports

The recommendations for cargos of explosives, at specified berths at each port, are presented in the table: Recommended Maximum Class 1 Quantities (NEQ) for Main Ports (see above for table). The NEQ differs according to the categories of explosives.

These quantities are recommended values. Each port company wishing to accept vessels carrying explosives or handle consignments of explosives must determine how they achieve compliance with the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work (Hazardous Substances) Regulations 2017. Please send any specific enquiries on these Regulations to WorkSafe. 

Health and Safety at Work (Hazardous Substances) Regulations 2017 - New Zealand legislation website

Some port companies have conducted their own studies and separately determined quantity limits. In this case, the relevant port company should be contacted to establish their requirements before arranging for the movement of explosives through that port.

The recommended quantity limits are based on a report conducted by Opus International Consultants Limited. Detailed reports on each of the ports were provided to the respective port companies.

Read the Report (pdf 220.63KB)