ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The cause of a house fire last July on Parsell’s Avenue was thought to be fireworks.
It’s in the same Beachwood neighborhood as Monroe County Legislator Rachel Barnhart (D-21) and she says residents there are hearing way more fireworks than usual.
“Sometimes everyday, all day between the hours of 5pm and 4am,” says Barnhart.
Besides the safety concerns with constant mini explosions going off, Barnhart says it’s a serious quality of life issue, and they’ve been reaching out to her.
“Text messages, Facebook, Twitter. They’ve been stopping me while I walk the dog,” Barnhart said.
“They sound like cannon fire,” says Beachwood resident William Mills. He says he can’t figure out why there’s such a spike in bangs and blowups. “It’s annoying. Especially when you’re laying in bed.”
Lt. Ryan Fleming with the Rochester Fire Department says under no circumstances should illegal fireworks be used. If you’re out on the streets lighting any kind of fireworks off, keep safety in mind.
“Remember these things explode. They can cause physical harm,” says LT Fleming.
Some Police departments in the region say they are getting an uptick in calls on fireworks. While no one seems to know why there’s a rise, the Rochester Police Department says it’s normal this time of year, and people across the US are severely injured by fireworks annually. If anyone hears them in Rochester, call 911 so they can investigate.
“Certain fireworks are illegal to use within the city and all fireworks are dangerous. Every year people across the country are severely injured by fireworks and it’s our job to not only enforce the local laws regarding fireworks, but also to protect our citizens from injury,” said RPD Lt. Frank Camp.
However, Barnhart says calling 911 isn’t enough, and also reminds the community pets and veterans with PTSD can also be negatively affected.
“We’re going to need a multi-pronged approach that involves education,” she said.
Barnhart adds that means the fire department and community getting involved somehow to illustrate the dangers and disruptions caused by the devices, but she says she’s open to ideas.
“Ultimately we’ve got people who need to understand this is a dangerous activity, and it’s not a very neighborly activity,” she said.
For more information on New York’s fireworks laws and regulations, click here.