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Police caution against celebrating Independence Day with illegal fireworks

Tom Magnarelli
WRVO Public Media (file photo)
Illegal fireworks have been a problem in the city of Syracuse for years

New York State Police said they’ll be out in full force this holiday weekend, making sure people celebrating Independence Day are following the law.

Trooper Jack Keller said when it comes to fireworks, your best bet is to leave it to the professionals.

"There are many opportunities over the weekend,” said Keller. “Remember those (fireworks displays) at the parks and the roadsides will be busy with people parking along the roads and looking up at the sky, so please watch out for families and young children. And be patient when you're leaving those displays."

Keller said sparkling devices that are sold in New York state are legal, but can carry a significant risk. A report by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission found that in 2020, more than 2,400 people were hurt using devices like Roman candles, sparklers, or fountains.

The commission also founda significant upward trend in overall fireworks related injuries with a 25 percent increase since 2006.

Keller said there are other potential consequences, too.

"If you're using illegal fireworks and injure someone, you are liable,” said Keller. “Do not bring illegal fireworks in from Pennsylvania or other areas to New York, or you could be arrested and charged with a misdemeanor."

Jessica Cain is a freelance reporter for WRVO, covering issues around central New York. Most recently, Jessica was a package producer at Fox News in New York City, where she worked on major news events, including the 2016 presidential conventions and election. Prior to that, she worked as a reporter and anchor for multiple media outlets in central and northern New York. A Camillus native, Jessica enjoys exploring the outdoors with her daughters, going to the theater, playing the piano, and reading.