Thursday, December 11, 2008

Fireworks Ban to Begin in San Antonio

If you are like my 15-year-old son and you have always considered fireworks to be an essential part of your Fourth of July or New Year's Eve revelry and you are a resident of San Antonio, then the kickoff to 2009 is certain to be a disappointment for you. As many people living in Texas already know, we are experiencing a serious drought in our state. This week's amazing snowfall in Houston aside, the Lone Star State is in desperate need of precipitation. Therefore, official steps are now being taken to prevent any fires from sparking on the dry land. County Judge Nelson Wolff declared yesterday that a Bexar County fireworks ban will begin on December 20, the day on which fireworks stands were set to open for the holiday season.

Obviously, vendors who make money selling explosive devices which create colorful aerial displays, exciting booms or spinning spectacles of light are not happy with the judge's decision. They hoped for a compromise that would allow for the use of fireworks within specially designated safe zones that would be monitored by the local fire department. However, Judge Wolff decided that drastic measures needed to be taken in the name of public safety.

Before you decide to ignore this ban and buy some contraband fireworks from a guy who whispers to you from a dark alley, you should be aware of the penalties you would be facing. Violators may receive a fine of no more than $1000 or up to 180 days in jail. This is a pretty stiff penalty. I'll have to explain this very carefully to my son.

Is a rocket-propelled device that spells out 2009 in red and green sparkles once ignited really worth this price? While I certainly feel for the vendors who will be hurt by this ban, we must respect the need to preserve a fire-free environment and the safety of our fellow citizens in San Antonio.

The defense attorneys at Bertolino LLP can help if you have been accused of breaking any law, be it related to fireworks or not. Please contact our Austin, Houston, or San Antonio office today to discuss your case.

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