Ga. Town Bucks Fireworks Ban, Plans Display Despite Drought

June 20, 2007

The annual Fourth of July fireworks display in Roswell, Ga., will proceed as planned – barring a return of extremely dry conditions – the fire chief told the city council Monday night.

“It’s raining cats and dogs right now,” city spokeswoman Julie Brechbill said after the announcement at a council meeting.

But Chief Ricky Spencer reserves the right to cancel the fireworks if conditions worsen between now and the holiday, Brechbill said.

Roswell was one of several Georgia cities considering canceling major fireworks shows if the extreme drought conditions in the state don’t improve. Ware County is under a two-month fireworks ban, which covered Memorial Day and will also include the Fourth of July.

Fire officials are particularly concerned in south Georgia near the wildfires that have charred more than 600,000 acres of swamp and timberland since they began nearly two months ago.

The major displays are overseen by fire departments and have more safety precautions than the fireworks set off privately in many neighborhoods, said Georgia Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner John Oxendine. It’s the latter kind of pyrotechnics that concern state fire officials, he said.

The state has no authority to stop communities from putting on holiday fireworks shows, so it’s up to municipal governments to make the decision, Oxendine said.

Was this article valuable?

Here are more articles you may enjoy.