When it comes to using fireworks, police say wait

Posted at 11:59 PM, Jun 29, 2015
and last updated 2015-06-29 23:59:17-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Even with current restrictions on fireworks in Michigan, it would seem some people aren’t waiting to light up the sky in celebration of Independence Day. Grand Rapids Police tell us they’ve been getting a lot of calls recently regarding residents setting off fireworks, which is is illegal until the day before, the day of, or the day after a national holiday like Fourth of July.

“Our biggest concern is someone getting hurt,” GRPD Officer Don Allen told us. “I mean, these are projectiles flying through the air.”

Officials want residents to know that you must be 18 or older to purchase fireworks, and early use is a violation not only of the law, but also of your neighbor’s privacy and could cause unwanted harm to someone other than yourself.

“It’s one thing to harm yourself if you’re the one lighting it off and something happens or something goes wrong and you get hurt,” said Allen, “but what about the people in your neighborhood? There’s kids out, there’s elderly people, there’s dogs in backyards.”

But Kentwood Fire Department Fire Marshall Tim Maday says the problem of individuals using fireworks too early is a tough issue to fix. “The real challenge would be actually finding the person who was shooting the fireworks off,” said Maday. “Unless you catch someone lighting that device, it’s pretty hard to do anything about it.”

So, in order to avoid a run-in with the police or fire department this holiday weekend, officials recommend simply using common sense for safety's sake.