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  • Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

    Hey guys -- something a bit odd happened tonite (Sunday 11/13) before the fireworks and maybe someone here can explain.

    About half an hour before the fireworks Disneyland announced that they may be cancelling the fireworks due to "winds at high altitudes". They announced that again like 15 minutes before fireworks. Then 5 minutes before fireworks they announced they would be starting after all (which rocked since I was SO close to the Castle thanks to the magical stylings of our very own The Bob).

    That wouldn't have been so strange except for the fact that there was NO WIND tonite. Not even a little breeze. The flags on the castle weren't moving. The tops of very tall trees weren't moving. I've been at the Park when they DID in fact cancel fireworks due to wind -- but those days it was actually WINDY.

    So some questions: 1) Why would they cancel due to winds at high altitudes since the fireworks aren't all that high up? 2) How would they even know there are "winds at high altitudes" anyway? 3) If there are "winds at high altitudes" and, for the sake of argument, they would affect fireworks thus requiring a last minute call on whether the fireworks were going to be shown or not -- how would that be any guarantee that the winds would "die down" for the entirety of the fireworks? (Was that question confusing enough?) LOL

    I was just curious so if anyone has any knowledge of this stuff I'd be ever so grateful.
    I am grateful... grapefruit! ~ Bjork (upon winning Best International Female Artist at the BRIT Awards)
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    Founding Member of the BA!

  • #2
    Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

    The wind at ground level and where the fireworks explode can be vastly different. There have been several timnes this year where the wind was blowing 10-15 mph faster than ground level, and Disney called of the fireworks...

    I'm not entirely sure, but I think the Anahiem Fire Department probably has something to do with Disney knowing if it's safe to do fireworks or not.

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    • #3
      Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

      They've had enough fires over the decades to know what's good and what's bad. Between fireworks going off backstage and fireworks being flung off the Matterhorn and fireworks going off on the roof of ride buildings, they're really concerned (and should be) about something going awry.

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      • #4
        Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

        I can try and answer one or two of your questions.

        1) Though Remember has lots of low level fireworks, there are still lots of firework shells that are launched high up in the air... especially those big "weeping willow" fireworks. If the winds are high, it can cause the shells to fly and explore somewhere unexpected and cause damage.
        2) The Disneyland Fire Department releases white weather balloons several times before the set fireworks performance time to guage the wind direction and strength.

        Unfortunately, I can't answer #3. Perhaps the "cancellation" wasn't a wind related problem. They just use that excuse for everything. Ever notice the sign in front of DCA's Zephyr? It's always, "Due to inclement weather..." whenever the ride is closed. HAHA... we all know that's not the reason for that. I think the "wind" cancellation is just the default announcement that they use.

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        • #5
          Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

          Thanks for your answers guys... wow that was like quick response, lol...

          GS yeah thats what I was thinking at first, about the "high winds" of the Zephyr lol... My brother was joking that perhaps they were going to announce the fireworks being cancelled due to "rain" this evening

          It just seemed so odd since there was not even a tiny breeze -- and we were looking at the tip tops of large trees and everything was perfectly still. I wonder how high those shells are shot?
          I am grateful... grapefruit! ~ Bjork (upon winning Best International Female Artist at the BRIT Awards)
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          Founding Member of the BA!

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          • #6
            Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

            Yeah, it's really fun when you're watching a FW show and the ash from the pyro gets into your eyeballs, and you're about to tear them out, when the PA comes on and announces that the fireworks are cancelled due to high winds.

            UH YA THINK!?!
            Member of the Disney Class of 2005
            Disneyland CM for 4 years.
            May 6, 2005 - present.

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            • #7
              Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

              Originally posted by melmel
              Yeah, it's really fun when you're watching a FW show and the ash from the pyro gets into your eyeballs, and you're about to tear them out, when the PA comes on and announces that the fireworks are cancelled due to high winds.

              UH YA THINK!?!
              Yeah that happens on Harbor Blvd after the show. It literally rains ash.

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              • #8
                Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

                Expect the fireworks to be cancelled a few times this week. The Santa Ana winds are supposed to be around beginning tonight lasting through the rest of the week in varying strengths. Usually they will still have the snow, after they make the official cancellation announcement.

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                • #9
                  Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

                  Well, the Matterhorn's pretty tall, and they shoot pyro off that. And of course some of the more traditional shells fly higher than the matterhorn. High enough, in fact, that they can be seen from Harbor Blvd all the way in Costa Mesa - south of the 405 fwy!

                  And as melmel insinuated, the ash at that levels, if blown in the wrong direction, wouldn't be too much fun.

                  Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...


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                  • #10
                    Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

                    Happened to us last year the week after Christmas two nights. One night they canceled due to winds at high elevations (and it was totally calm on the ground), one night they said they were canceled (due to wind at high elevations AND it was windy on the ground), but then at the last minute, they went ahead with the show.

                    The last minute one was great.....there were a handful of people on Main Street compared to the usual crowd. It was surreal. :lol:

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                    • #11
                      Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

                      You wanna see something scary, watch the fireworks from the Mickey & Friends parking structure... I was surprised how many glowing embers fall into the area backstage. I swear you can even see them bounce off the pavement sometimes. If the wind were blowing in the wrong direction, I understand how it could make the Anaheim FD AND Disneyland Mgmt more than a little nervous.
                      ---------------------------------------------


                      a walk around the park... Star Tours, Nemo, Fantasyland, Frontierland, DCA... and more!


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                      • #12
                        Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

                        One trick to check for higher wind speeds aloft is to look at the flag pole on top of Main Street Station. I've frequently seen it where there was no wind at ground level, but that flag was flying straight out.

                        Our first time seeing it, we got to visit with one of the OC firemen who worked part time on fireworks duty. He informed us that there are a number of firemen in various stations around the fireworks areas who have the ability to E-stop the show if there's a massive wind shift. Which probably a really good idea if Tinker Belle is flying around, and they don't want her to get scorched.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

                          Originally posted by Wotan
                          Which probably a really good idea if Tinker Belle is flying around, and they don't want her to get scorched.
                          Wow that's interesting about the e-stops for wind shifts... has anyone ever seen that happen?

                          I remember seeing an estop for Fantasmic! when someone fell in the water. The music just went WRARRRRRRRR to a slowing halt and the lights instantly went on!

                          Yeesh I am just picturing this massive fireball shooting back and forth across the castle. (Which would be funny if they attached a dummy soaked in kerosene one night). But doing it for real.... woosh it has to be terrifying.
                          I am grateful... grapefruit! ~ Bjork (upon winning Best International Female Artist at the BRIT Awards)
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                          Founding Member of the BA!

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                          • #14
                            Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

                            You know... Wind speeds at 300 feet in the air are quite different then at ground zero.

                            The reason it happened last night was most likely due to the different temperature at 300 ft in the air. When you have great temperature difference that close together it creates a circular motion that causes.... Wind. (Of course, we should have felt it on the ground if that was the case, in which I did not.)

                            I was happy it started it last night on time. We were in Phase 2 for awhile and almost canceled it. The Wind died right around 9:15.



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                            • #15
                              Re: Fireworks Cancelled Due to Winds?

                              Yeah, they threatened us like that last June when we were there. They did have the show after-all, so all was OK.

                              After waiting a few hours on the ground, most folks would have rioted if they would have cancelled it...

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