HOUSTON – With the 4th of July holiday quickly approaching; the Harris County Fire Marshal’s Office reminds residents that all fireworks are banned in the county and that a burn ban remains in effect.
"Sparklers, novelties and trick noisemakers are not classified as fireworks but they are a source of ignition and emit sparks that are not contained; therefore, they are included in the outdoor burn ban," said Harris County Fire Marshal Mike Montgomery.
According to officials, the wildfire danger is so great that even a carelessly discarded sparkler could ignite dry grass very quickly.
The number of outdoor fires in unincorporated Harris County reported to the Fire Marshal’s Office since April 19, the first day of the burn ban, is 1,090. Almost half of those fires have occurred since June 1. There were 125 reported outdoor fires in the unincorporated county last week, including this weekend.
Violators of the fireworks ban face a $1,000 fine and/or 180 days in jail. Violators of the burn ban could also face a fine of up to $500 for each violation.
The ban on the sales and use of fireworks is expected to remain in place until the end of the extension period granted by Governor Rick Perry.
For more information about the burn and fireworks bans go to hcfmo.net.