With temperatures rising, the Fourth of July holiday around the corner, and raising concerns that Los Angeles is poised to experience one of the worst fire seasons yet, Councilmember Mark Ridley-Thomas introduced a motion at a recent Los Angeles City Council Meeting that seeks to curb the use of illegal fireworks. The motion directs the Fire and Police Departments to report back on setting up a system to track and respond to fireworks complaints through a mobile application that would issue automatic violations. A similar program has been established in the County of San Bernardino.
“The bottom line has to be safety,” Ridley-Thomas said. “The use of illegal fireworks poses a threat to Angelenos, whether you are housed and unhoused. We must get creative, and we must make it easy to identify illegal uses and establish sufficient repercussions to curb this activity. Too many of our neighbors are literally playing with fire, and the results can be lethal.”
Two people were killed on March 16, after a powerful commercial fireworks explosion in Ontario, California.
“The Fire Department is supportive of all programs which can significantly reduce the risk of injury and potential fires from the use of illegal fireworks,” said Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas. “Councilmember Ridley-Thomas’ motion is innovative and I look forward to collaborating with the Police Department, the City Council, and other city departments in this endeavor.”