SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) – Wildfire dangers are forcing Utah state officials to issue a statewide fireworks ban. Several counties plan to enforce the new policy, and those who set off fireworks could face some stiff penalties.
On the Fourth of July, many people love to shoot off fireworks into the sky. But this year it's so dry outside and so many areas of Utah are on fire, the Utah State Forrester is calling for a fireworks ban on all state, federal and unincorporated private lands. That means if you live anywhere in Utah that's not inside a city, you can't set off fireworks. If you do, you could spend up to 6 months in jail, and pay a $1,000 fine.
But that's not all, wildfires have put such a fear of fire across the state, many cities are banning fireworks too. (See list.)
Some Utahns support it, others don't.
"I think it's a good idea," said Allison Frazier, supports the ban.
"There's so much fire danger, there's been so many this year so far that it's just you can't be too careful," said Trina Sinclair, supports the ban.
"I just totally agree with it, I love the Fourth of July, it's one of my favorite holidays but I think we all need to be cognisant of what's going on, and keep it to those that are trained and know what they're doing," said Heather Terry, supports the ban.
"It takes all the glory out of celebrating the Fourth of July, and what it's really about, I think the fireworks are a part of what the Fourth is and it takes away from that," said Saia Taumoefoleu, against the ban.
"It's like having a Christmas present without it being wrapped up and you already know what it is," said Edgar Wallwork, against the ban.
"I think it makes common sense, there's been a lot of wildfires, there's been a lot of dry ground up there so, I'm okay with that," Steve Greer, supports the ban.
Whether you agree with the ban or you don't. If you shoot off fireworks in the wrong place it'll cost you.
To see if your city is banning fireworks, just click on the link labeled “Utah Fireworks Ban List” embedded in this story.