Fireworks-filled Fourth of July comes with county concerns

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Updated: 7/04/2012 10:35 pm
Without the restrictions of the burn ban, many were excited to spend this Fourth of July with lots of fireworks.

However, Lubbock County Commissioner Bill McCay said the aftermath of the celebration can leave quite the mess.

“Just treat the area where you are like you would treat your own property, and just pick up, because it costs us tax dollars to clean all of this up,” McCay said. “We will spend the next several days picking up trash, fireworks debris, instead of maintaining roads.”

McCay said it is easier on the county when everyone does their part.

“We will get our employees, and then we will work-released folks on probation, we will get folks that need community service time,” McCay said. “We will get those individuals and we will load them up in vans and trailers and we will just go throughout the entire county picking up fireworks debris.”

Yvette Chapman, with the Lubbock Cooper Band Booster Club, was pleased with the turnout this year, and said they made almost $21,000 yesterday alone.

“Last year during the drought, they were not letting us sell at all so we could not even sell one little firecracker,” Chapman said, “so whatever profit we make this year is just a huge success for our organization.”

Chapman said the burn ban lift was not the only thing that boosted sales.

“Our economy has gone up a little bit, so people are willing to spend a little extra money on some of our bigger items,” Chapman said. “We have sold some really huge, big boxes for $600 a piece, and we have managed to sell three of them. So it has really been a plus for us this year.”

McCay said it is important to not get carried away, because you will be held accountable for anything that happens.

“If you do shoot fireworks and it causes a fire, and there is damage to a property, then you are liable for that damage,” McCay said. “So please keep in mind that you can't catch something on fire and then run away. You will get caught, and you will get fined. So number one, be careful and just pick up your own trash.”

Just last year alone, consumer fireworks revenue reached almost 650 million.

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