Firework dangers remain, despite recent rains

Officials warn of possible dangers, fire threats


SAN ANTONIO – With fireworks a go this Fourth of July, fireworks sales have quickly escalated. 

Officials expect the skies to light up Thursday night.

"I just spent $200 at the one over there on Pue Road," said Issabo Rio, as she purchased more fireworks at a second stand.

One of her favorite holidays, Rio said it is tradition to shoot fireworks.

"You get to blow things up and nobody tells you not to do it, so why not?" said a joking Rio.

It is legal to use fireworks if you live in an unincorporated part of Bexar County and the fireworks are used responsibly.

"You are not free to use fireworks in an unsafe manner," said Bexar County Sheriff Susan Pamerleau.

If the safety of others is threatened, it could result in a stiff penalty.

"You will be arrested," added Pamerleau.

Texas HB 1813, passed in June, does make it legal to transport unopened and packaged fireworks through city limits; a change from years past. 

The fireworks, however, must be in a glove compartment, trunk, or in the bed of a truck. 

San Antonio city officials and Bexar County officials talked tough Wednesday about keeping the holiday safe and fire-free. They demonstrated just how fast a fire could spread from an errant firework. During the demonstration, it only took two minutes from flames to develop.

"A big misconception is that because of those rains, everything is now safe," said Bexar County Fire Marshall Craig Roberts.

Roberts warned that should you choose to shoot fireworks, being prepared is most important.

"Make sure that you have a garden hose or a water supply available if you do start some type of fire, you can put it out quickly," said Roberts.

Both Bexar County and the city of San Antonio will have hotlines in place for citizens to report illegal activities. 

The city's hotline is 207-0202 and it will be open from 8pm until midnight on July 4. 

The county's hotline is 335-FIRE and it will be open starting 8 a.m. Friday.

For a list of recent stories Justin Horne has done, click here.

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