A video filmed at last year’s celebrations showed fireworks being fired horizontally at head-height into a crowd, and has been viewed online nearly a million times.
The video has been watched nearly a million times on YouTube. Photo: Jash Doweyko-Jurkowski
There will be extra officers patrolling the square, all equipped with body cameras and spotlights, and footage the square's many security cameras will be observed in real time.
“We are going to make sure that we have sufficient personnel on the scene; there will be a lot more of us about than on a normal Saturday night, you’ll notice it,” Kalle Persson, at the police operations centre for southern Sweden, told The Local.
Full-scale fireworks battles have become something of a tradition in Möllevången, a neighbourhood in the south of the city, over the last decade.
“When I moved to Malmö I always heard that Möllevången is a bit like a battlefield on New Year’s Eve, that it’s standard there and more or less a tradition,” Jash Doweyko-Jurkowski, who shot the video, told The Local.
“But in my opinion, this is a public place, and it’s important that people should feel safe across their city, it’s the city’s responsibility to ensure that.”
Kalle Persson put the dangerous fireworks use down to “a combination of alcohol and poor judgement”.
If a firework hits and hurts someone, the person who fired it risks a prison sentence for assault or causing bodily harm, he warned.
Despite the dangerous behaviour documented in the video, police believe that last year was in fact more subdued than in some preceding years, with the use of body cameras encouraging revellers to use fireworks more sensibly.
December 31st is the only day of the year when it is permitted to launch fireworks in a public place in Malmö, although even then you can only do it between 6pm and 2am, and only if you are over 18.