Independence Day is coming, and with it the traditional sponsored and professionally staged Fourth of July fireworks shows. But in many neighborhoods, freelance bombardments have already begun and will go on for weeks, often into the wee hours.
For many, the random explosions are frightening and frustrating. They’re also illegal.
Sayville’s Community Ambulance Company recently began distributing lawn signs to military combat veterans that ask people to be courteous with fireworks. Many combat veterans are overwhelmed by random explosions. Some even suffer flashbacks when these cheap cherry bombs and bottle rockets explode. The lawn signs are a kind idea, but veterans don’t necessarily want to be identified as the reason people can’t have fun.
In most of New York State, only the smallest sparklers and similar devices are legal. In Nassau, Suffolk and New York City, even those have been banned. Most people who set off fireworks are just having fun, with no ill intentions. Nevertheless, their celebrations can create a lot of distress for others.
Police should crack down on illegal fireworks, which are both dangerous and disturbing, particularly late at night. And people should be considerate. Our veterans, our pets and our youngest kids shouldn’t have to be terrified by their neighbors’ fun.