Following a ‘somewhat’ quiet Independence Day Celebration last year, Arbuckle Fire Chief continues his warning to residents against the use of illegal fireworks.
“I want to thank the residents of Arbuckle that kept their celebrations safe and sane,” said Arbuckle Fire Chief Casey Cox, “however, we will be on the lookout for illegal firework activity and issue citations.”
Cox reiterated his comments from last year that he supports fireworks, and enjoys the show – however, safety of the community must come first.
“We’ve just come out of a drought, and although we’ve had rain, it isn’t enough – everything is still dry, and fire danger is imminent,” said Cox.
Cox commented on the recent fires that destroyed a home in Arbuckle, and in Dunnigan. Both fires, not firework related, quickly bring the devastation of a the dry conditions and fire hazard to the forefront.
“I understand we all love fireworks, and for many organizations it’s their largest fundraiser of the year; but burning down your home, a neighbor’s home or the possibility of the loss of life – isn’t worth it.” said Cox.
A large concern comes from the limited resources, with several area firefighters sent to fight the Erskine Fire. Additionally, Independence Day weekend is one of the busiest times for law enforcement and emergency services.
“What people don’t understand, if we are fighting a fire caused by the negligence use of fireworks, we could be delayed responding to other emergencies,” said Cox, “this could cause someone to lose their life – that alone, isn’t worth a few a few seconds of sparkle.”
California has a zero tolerance for the sale and use of illegal fireworks. Illegal fireworks include sky rockets, bottle rockets, roman candles, aerial shells, firecrackers and other types that explode, go into the air, or move on the ground in an uncontrollable manner. It is illegal to sell, transport, or use fireworks that do not carry the “Safe and Sane” seal, as well as possess or use any fireworks in a community where they are not permitted. If convicted, a violator could be fined up to $50,000 as well as sent to jail for up to one year.
“I am asking for community support once again, celebrate the 4th of July with safe and sane fireworks,” said Cox, “I would hate to be the bad guy and have to issue a ban on fireworks.”
Cox added that if anyone has any questions regarding fireworks purchased to stop in at their local Fire Department for inspection.
“It’s better to be safe than sorry,” said Cox.