Another Fourth of July is upon us. This is a time for us to recognize the United States’ independence, in an annual celebration that goes back as far as the 18th century. Every year, we commemorate the beginning of American independence with parades, family gatherings, fireworks, barbecues and more. Although celebrations may look slightly different for many this year due to COVID-19, I still encourage all of our residents to enjoy the Fourth of July festivities, safely.
As many are aware, summer and the Fourth of July bring about an increased use of illegal fireworks. Keep in mind that all fireworks remain illegal for use, selling and or possession in Santa Clarita. An illegal firework is any item that explodes, rises in the air or moves about the ground, including, but not limited to, large bottle rockets, Roman candles, chasers, firecrackers and sparklers of more than 10 inches in length or a quarter of an inch in diameter. Use or possession of fireworks can result in fines of up to $1,000 and/or arrest.
In addition to legal implications, fireworks also pose a danger to animals, structures, the environment and your own life. For one, the sound of a firework can cause anxiety or fear for pets. This can result in pets trembling, shaking, destructive behaviors, running away from home and more. With high temperatures and windy weather, one spark of a firework can ignite a fire within our community as well. Along with causing fear in animals and potential fires in Santa Clarita, fireworks can also severely injure or disfigure you, which is reason enough to avoid using them.
As a part of the city’s push for Fourth of July safety, all residents should also be aware that they can always report illegal firework use online at Santa-Clarita.com/RSC. Reports can be made by typing “Illegal fireworks” into the topic search bar, then entering an approximate location and detailed account of the incident. Residents may also anonymously report fireworks by dialing 661-255-1121. The Sheriff’s Department will respond to reports at their earliest convenience. Please do not dial 9-1-1 to report illegal fireworks unless it is a life-threatening emergency.
To learn more about the city of Santa Clarita’s rules and laws on fireworks, please visit Santa-Clarita.com/Fireworks.
Bill Miranda is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at [email protected].