Fireworks ban in place for 2014 within Bellingham city limits

Public safety officials want to remind Bellingham residents and visitors that all consumer fireworks are prohibited in the City for this year's Independence Day celebrations. The Bellingham City Council adopted an ordinance to ban consumer fireworks within the City limits. The ordinance becomes effective June 18, 2014. Any person who violates the consumer fireworks ban … Read more

Jun 09, 2014 - by Bellingham Fire Marshal Jason Napier and Bellingham Police Lieutenant Bob Vander Yacht

Public safety officials want to remind Bellingham residents and visitors
that all consumer fireworks are prohibited in the City for this year's
Independence Day celebrations.

The Bellingham City Council adopted an ordinance to ban consumer fireworks
within the City limits. The ordinance becomes effective June 18, 2014. Any
person who violates the consumer fireworks ban will be subject to a civil
infraction with a fine of up to $1,000.00. The minimum fine will be $250.00.
Also, law enforcement and fire officials have the authority to immediately
seize fireworks that are located within the City.

In addition, devices that some people call “fireworks” are actually illegal
explosive devices that cannot legally be possessed anywhere in the State of
Washington. Examples include M-80's or larger, cherry bombs and any
improvised device such as a tennis ball bomb. Felony charges can be brought
against people found guilty of possessing or discharging illegal explosives.

As in the past, education and enforcement activities are planned this year
to make sure residents and visitors are aware of the consumer fireworks ban.

Education and enforcement activities

Bellingham Fire and Police departments are planning education and
enforcement activities to ensure a safe and legal Independence Day in our
City.

From June 28 through July 5, emphasis patrol teams of police officers and
fire inspectors will circulate in neighborhoods, responding to
fireworks-related 9-1-1 calls, providing education about the Bellingham
fireworks ban, and taking enforcement action for violations.

We expect our emphasis patrol teams to make a difference in the quantity of
fireworks and illegal devices being used. Please remember, even with teams
roving in our neighborhoods we simply cannot be everywhere at once.

Please call 9-1-1 if you observe violations of the consumer fireworks ban.
This helps us know where the problems are and we can then send our
enforcement teams to the most troublesome locations. It also allows us to
collect information to use for future education and enforcement efforts.

More details about current fireworks regulations can be found in Bellingham
Municipal Code 10.24.130, accessible via the City website at
www.cob.org.

Enjoy public celebrations & fireworks displays

Many community events are planned throughout the region to celebrate
Independence Day.

In Bellingham, the Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce & Industry has
partnered with Haggen Food & Pharmacy to provide a community fireworks
display and festival with vendor and craft booths, live bands and a beer
garden. The celebration is from 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. at Zuanich Point Park,
with fireworks set to go off at approximately 10:15 p.m.

We encourage community members to take advantage of this event or other
opportunities to celebrate our nation's independence and enjoy large, legal
fireworks displays.

Thank you for your patience and cooperation. We look forward to a safe and
legal 2014 Independence Day!

Bellingham Fire Marshal Jason Napier and Bellingham Police Lieutenant
Bob Vander Yacht work together to coordinate fireworks enforcement and
education activities for the City of Bellingham.

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