VANCOUVER, Wash. -- Vancouver is celebrating July 4 quietly this year.
The city has banned fireworks within city limits.
In Oregon, certain fireworks are illegal. If it flies, explodes, travels more than six feet off the ground of 12 inches into the air, it's not permitted in the state.
Even legal fireworks can cause issues - Portland Fire and Rescue says more fires are reported on the 4th of July than any other day.
Vancouver ban now in effect
Vancouver Fire Marshal Heidi Scapelli says the city's complete ban on the sale and use of fireworks within city limits was a necessity.
“The more urban we become, the more populated we become, it is too much risk for our community to risk these devices coming into the city,” said Scapelli.
Scapelli says fireworks have been proven to increase the fire danger, are a noise nuisance, and scare pets into running away. The new law will be enforced with zero tolerance and violators will be hit with a minimum $500 fine.
“We have a conglomerate of fire deputies and officials going out during firework season,” said Scapelli.
Gene Marlow owner of Mean Gene Fireworks outside Vancouver says he doesn't think the city's fireworks ban will stop people from buying them, but he is annoyed at the new law.
“It’s kind of ironic that we are celebrating our freedoms and then they are taking them away from us,” said Marlow. “It does not reflect what the majority of citizens want.”
Some residents in Vancouver think a few irresponsible people ruined things for everyone else.
“We’re I live it seems like people shoot them off all year long," said Timothy Fullerton. “If people stopped doing that we'd have a better chance of it being legal.”
Marlow says he doesn’t think the ban will have any effect on the celebration.
“From past experience when cities have bans it just forces people to go other places to get them,” he said.
Scapelli says she expects most people will obey the new law.
“Our experience enforcing the law in Vancouver is that most people comply with the law.”
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