FILE PHOTO: 11-year-old Savannah Rousselo of Canyon Country sports her red, white and blue patriotic hat as she watches the city of Santa Clarita's fireworks show on the walkway outside Westfield's Valencia TownCenter Mall Tuesday, July 4, 2014.

Government, safety officials to highlight dangers of illegal fireworks

The city of Santa Clarita, Los Angeles County and public safety officials are urging residents to engage in Fourth of July festivities responsibly as the holiday nears.

Officials have scheduled a multi-agency fireworks safety press conference 3 p.m. Wednesday, June 26, at Fire Station 126, located at 26320 Citrus St., the city announced in a news release.

“Using illegal fireworks is not worth the safety or financial risk,” said county 5th District Supervisor Kathryn Barger. “It’s our job as responsible community members to do our part to help prevent fires, injuries, and liabilities. This Fourth of July, please leave the fireworks shows to the professionals to keep our families and neighborhoods out of harm’s way.”

Participating agencies include the City Council, L.A. County 5th District Supervisor Kathryn Barger, L.A. County Fire Chief Daryl Osby, Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Capt. Robert Lewis and the Grossman Burn Center.

“The fact that we have so many agencies coming together to prevent illegal fireworks is a testament to how serious we are about our zero-tolerance stance on illegal fireworks in the city,” Mayor Marsha McLean said in a prepared statement. “The recent fires we’ve had in town should be a reminder of the potential for damaging fires in Santa Clarita. With all of the dry brush covering our hillsides — now is not the time to play with illegal fireworks; they pose an immense threat to our community.”

McLean also reminds the public not to forget about pets, those who may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder or anxiety from fireworks.

Every year, fireworks start more than 1,600 fires and are the cause of thousands of injuries including burns, loss of limbs and death, according to the LACFD. The public is encouraged to report illegal fireworks activity by calling the Sheriff’s station at 661-255-1121 and not dial 9-1-1 unless it is a life-threatening emergency.

The possession, sale or use of fireworks is prohibited citywide and those found in violation could face fines of up to $1,000 under Chapter 9.60 of the Santa Clarita Municipal Code. Fireworks labeled “Safe and Sane,” such as sparklers, snaps, smoke balls and any item that explodes are included.

“Our deputies will cite anyone they see setting off fireworks and they will confiscate all illegal fireworks,” Lewis said in a prepared statement. “We know fireworks are part of the festivities, but we urge everyone to leave them to the professionals.”

The city’s annual Fourth of July fireworks show is scheduled to take place at Westfield Valencia Town Center at 9:15 p.m. July 4. For more information on local professional fireworks shows in and near the SCV or about fireworks regulation, visit santa-clarita.com/Fireworks.

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