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Recent rains won’t change fireworks restrictions

SAN ANTONIO, TX.– Even though Bexar County has received some rain in the past days, the fireworks restrictions will stay in place through the July 4 holiday. The National Weather Service is forecasting a chance of rain every day through the weekend. However, it would take significant amounts of rain to reverse the effects of the drought. 
 

Residents in Bexar County who wish to shoot fireworks will have to go to one of nine designated areas or risk a $1,000 fine from Fire Marshal Investigators or Bexar County Sheriff’s Deputies. The safe areas, which are sponsored by either Alamo Fireworks or Mr. W Fireworks, have been burned down to remove any dry vegetation that could serve as fuel. Volunteer fire departments will be stationed at each site. 
 

By Commissioners Court order, the sites will be open from 6 p.m. to midnight Thursday and Friday. 

 

Those nine sites are: 

● U.S. 281 South, inside Loop 1604 (two sites) 

● U.S. 90 West at Montgomery Road 

● Interstate 10 West at Old Fredericksburg Road (two sites) 

● Talley Road at FM 471 

● FM 1346 and East Houston Street, just inside Loop 1604 

● Highway 16, one mile south of Loop 1604 

● Interstate 35 South at Kinney Road 
 

Please note there is no longer a safe area located at Loop 1604 between Applewhite and Jett roads. 

 

Bexar County prepares for July Fourth
 

Before the “dozer strike team” could even pull into its base at the Bexar County

Southton Road Service Center, a Texas Forest Service team arriving from

Amarillo last week had to respond to a grass fire in the County. Two days earlier

a County Public Works crew trained to assist with firefighting was dispatched at 6

p.m. to a fire that kept them busy until 6 a.m. – this was after the crew’s regular

10-hour shift.
 

That should be testament enough to the dry conditions that could prove

disastrous when mixed with the illegal use of fireworks this July 4th holiday. In

order to thwart such disaster, Bexar County law enforcement and emergency

officials, along with city, state and fireworks vendors, are taking extra steps to

enforce the restrictions on the use of fireworks and protect life and property.

“We have everything in place to make this as safe a holiday as possible,” Bexar

County Fire Marshal Orlando Hernandez said. “The only thing we need is for

residents to adhere to the restrictions and avoid setting a devastating fire.”

 

Bexar County Sheriff Rolando Tafolla will have all available deputies patrolling

and responding to violations of the County’s fireworks restrictions. This will result

in an additional 20 deputies to respond to calls. Additionally, Hernandez and 14

Fire Marshal Investigators will be looking for violations, mostly in unmarked cars.

If an area volunteer fire department needs assistance, 12 County Public Works

personnel are trained to back up firefighters with water trucks and bulldozers.

The Texas Forest Service strike team, which includes personnel from the U.S.

Fish and Wild Service, arrived Thursday to supplement local firefighting.

The three bulldozers, each with a front blade and rear plow, can be used

together or separately. The front blade is used to create a wide fire line by rapidly

shaving off the top layer of vegetation. The rear blade can be used to dig a

deeper fire line when needed.
 

The County’s Public Safety Communications Center is preparing for an increase

in emergency calls and reports of violations by working augmented 12-hour shifts

and using the County’s overflow facility at the Bexar Metro 9-1-1 District.

Communications Manager Robert Adelman also set up a fireworks hotline, (210)

335-FIRE for residents in unincorporated Bexar County to report violations and

free up the emergency lines and call takers. The hotline will open at 4 p.m. July 3

and stay open through July 6. Any reports of violations before or after that should

be made by calling (210) 335-6000.

The County’s restrictions limit the use of fireworks to nine designated safe areas

sponsored by local fireworks vendors Mr. W and Alamo Fireworks. The safe

areas have been burned down to remove any dry vegetation that could serve as

fuel. Volunteer firefighters will be stationed at each site, but if they are dispatched

to another location, the vendors will close that site until firefighters can return.

 

The sites will be open from 6 p.m. to midnight July 3 and July 4. Use of fireworks

outside of the specified times and locations could result in a $1,000 fine. Please

note that the safe area on Loop 1604 between Applewhite and Jett roads has

been cancelled by the property owner.

Fuente: Condado de Bexar