Spokane fire crews crack down on illegal fireworks

Spokane fire crews crack down on illegal fireworks

SPOKANE, Wash. -- Fireworks are illegal in Spokane but the fire department responded to several calls on the Fourth of July for people shooting off fireworks anyway.

Before fireworks were outlawed in Spokane firefighters responded to more than 100 fires each year in the days surrounding the Fourth of July. City officials estimate the fireworks ban has prevented about 2,200 fires.

On Tuesday, the Spokane Fire Department said they responded to about 30 calls for fireworks and wrote 12 citations. If you get a citation for fireworks, it comes with a hefty fine of $536. You could also be facing court costs. Each year, fire officials said they get less and less firework related calls.

"It was much quieter, with the exception of certain pockets in the city, but overall, much quieter than it has been in years past,” said Spokane Fire Chief Brian Schaeffer.

Schaeffer said they had a few small incidents but no properties were lost because of fires started by fireworks. Firefighters did confiscate fireworks from several people.

"That happened a lot. People were from out of town and didn't know. They simply didn't know and their fireworks were confiscated and destroyed," Schaeffer explained.

As for injuries, Sacred Heart Hospital leaders said they only had minor injuries. Staff said injuries to hands and eyes are the most common from fireworks. Staff also said they continue to see fewer injuries each year and told me the emergency room wasn't any busier than normal.

© 2017 KREM-TV


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