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Columbia Police Department prepares for fireworks enforcement ahead of Independence Day

FILE -- A warning label printed on a firework.
FILE -- A warning label printed on a firework.


Fireworks season officially kicked off in Missouri on Thursday but police want Columbia residents to know they're still illegal inside city limits.

Columbia city ordinance prohibits the use of fireworks within the city limits.

Columbia Police Department spokesperson Jenny Hopper spoke about why it is important to follow this ordinance.

"So one, it's illegal," Hopper said. "There is a city ordinance saying that you can't use them. However, fireworks can cause damage and fires to structures, to vehicles. We're in a residential setting. If you are shooting off fireworks and your neighbor's outside and a firework falls over, it could cause injury to your neighbors."

From June 20 to July 10, 2023, the Columbia Police Department received 253 fireworks-related calls, Hopper said.

Hopper said officers will be looking for illegal fireworks activity on the Fourth of July.

"We obviously get called to these, anyone shooting off fireworks," Hopper said. "We also patrol neighborhoods. And if we hear fireworks, we respond to that. In the event we catch people shooting off fireworks, we do take their fireworks. It can also lead to receiving a citation for the fireworks or being arrested."

CPD is encouraging people to attend the City of Columbia's Fire in the Sky event at Stephen's Lake Park on July 4.

The Missouri Department of Public Safety has issued more than 1,500 permits for seasonal firework sales. Sales are illegal inside the Columbia city limits but several shops are set up in Boone County just outside the city limits.

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Allison Weaver

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