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Billings Fire Department advises citizens to use fireworks responsibly



Billings, Montana – Many locals in Billings are anticipating the Fourth of July because of the rainy June. Despite the rain, Billings Fire advises citizens to exercise caution when lighting off fireworks.

An enjoyable Fourth of July tradition that many people look forward to is watching fireworks.

“It’s the only time I ever really get to light anything on fire,” said Kai, a 9-year-old firework lover, on Friday.

However, there may be risks associated with that enjoyment.

For this reason, the city has a message for anyone handling fireworks on July Fourth.

“Anytime you are dealing with fireworks there is a potential fire hazard there, so just be careful, be responsible,” said city Assistant Fire Marshall Jaime Fender.

This past month, Billings saw its third wettest June on record, which decreased our fire hazard. Firefighters in Billings worry that this would encourage people to take risks they otherwise wouldn’t.

“Fireworks are illegal in the city of Billings,” stated Fender. “People might have a false sense of security, we have had a ton of moisture, but they are still illegal.”

Having said that, the business has benefited from all the green. More individuals are shopping for fireworks now than in previous years, according to fireworks vendors.

“I’m on track to have my most successful year,” said Randy Schmitz, who owns and operates a firework stand on the West End. “A lot of folks when they come in, they talk about how green it is and how wet it’s been, so that probably is a factor.”

Additionally, Schmitz’s stand provides fireworks that different stands might not.

“We tend to sell a lot of large items at this stand, not all stands do,” he said.

A company owner who is undoubtedly gaining from our rainy conditions is preparing for increased business as the Fourth of July approaches.

According to the city, areas including The Rimrocks, Phipps Park, and Zimmerman Park will be completely closed off on July 4th morning. The morning of the fifth will see them all reopen.

There will also be free Fourth – July activities and fireworks displays that evening at MetraPark in Billings and Thompson Park in Laurel at dusk.

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