Lack of rain raises concern over fireworks

EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I (WPRI) — The East Providence Fire Department is in a difficult position as they discuss the safety concerns of fireworks this Fourth of July weekend.

In the last two weeks, there has been less than 1/10 inch of rain in East Providence, and the dry stretch could possibly mean no fireworks in town.

Capt. Kenneth Botelho said that would be unlikely, but always a possibility. “I mean it could be right up until the last minute” before a decision is made he said. “But right now, it’s okay. So, we’re just going to go with that right now.”

Corey Welch/WPRI 12
Safety tips to avoid brush fires » (Corey Welch | WPRI 12)

If fireworks continue to be allowed, Capt. Botelho advises to stay away from dry trees, leaves, and grass while setting them off. “Maybe do it in your driveway or in a parking lot. Somewhere safe where it’s clear of that type of vegetation where it’s going to be possibly catching on fire.”

Also, make sure you’re buying your fireworks in Rhode Island. “Anything that explodes or launches itself into the air is illegal in Rhode Island,” stated Capt. Botelho.

Other safety reminders from the Captain include being sure to put your fireworks in a bucket of water before throwing them in the trash, and never mix drinking alcohol with using fireworks.

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