2nd October 2023 – (Hong Kong) A few hundred people gathered at Central Pier yesterday, eagerly waiting to board boats and set sail to witness the spectacular fireworks display over Victoria Harbour. This event marks the first fireworks show in five years, with the last one taking place in 2018. The anticipation was palpable as locals and tourists patiently queued up, excited to experience the breathtaking fireworks up close and personal.
The crowd began to gather in the late afternoon around 5pm, with many individuals finding a spot on the ground to rest while they waited for nightfall. A significant number of police personnel were stationed in the area to ensure order and safety. By 6pm, a long queue of over 200 people formed near Pier 10 at Central, consisting of both locals and visitors eagerly awaiting their turn to board the boats for the fireworks spectacle. Immigration officers were present to maintain order, holding up banners that read, “Observation area is full” to control the flow of people.
The boarding process started at 7pm, and the boats were scheduled to return around 10pm, allowing approximately three hours for the attendees to enjoy the festivities. Apart from the fireworks display, passengers were treated to scenic views and a delightful dinner onboard, featuring a variety of cuisines such as Thai, Chinese, and Western. Each person paid around HK$1,000 for the excursion, with one visitor from Guangzhou expressing her excitement to witness the fireworks up close.
Safety concerns were also addressed by the participants, with many expressing confidence in the boat companies’ security measures. The atmosphere was filled with anticipation and a sense of adventure, as everyone looked forward to a memorable evening.
Mr. Wong, a local resident, and approximately ten of his friends chartered a private yacht for the evening’s event. He expressed his desire for the fireworks display to last longer, suggesting a duration of at least half an hour or more. He also mentioned that he hoped for more variety and richness in the fireworks’ designs, comparing it to the New Year’s fireworks display. Wong brought ample supplies of food and beverages on board, intending to stay until just before 11pm. He reassured that safety was not a concern for him and his group, as they had allocated enough space to avoid collisions with other boats or fireworks vessels.
However, it is worth noting that a video shared by a netizen on Facebook captured a small vessel colliding with a chartered boat full of passengers after the fireworks display ended. This incident occurred in the rough sea of Victoria Harbour as yachts and boats scrambled to leave the area. Fortunately, no injuries were reported, but the incident highlighted the congestion caused by the numerous private yachts present in the area one to two hours before the fireworks commenced.