Each year the Bakersfield Fire Department wrestles with the problem of illegal fireworks during the Fourth of July, and Fire Chief Doug Greener continues to aggressively combat the problem.
During the June 21 episode of “The Ralph Bailey Show,” Greener said the Fourth is one of the busiest and frustrating periods for the department.
“It’s a complicated issue,” Greener said. “We’ve worked, and I know the (City Council) has struggled with this trying to, not to cross a line regulation wise particularly for the folks who are using legal fireworks, and those who are using the responsibly, they don’t want to do a blanket shutdown.”
Greener said the state’s fire conditions continue to worsen and that he would ban the fireworks, but he’s willing to admit that’s not going to happen anytime soon. Greener said the department will have a 20-person enforcement team to find those using illegal fireworks, but that the proliferation of legal fireworks makes that challenging.
“It’s really morphed into a great time to blow stuff up,” Greener said.
Lois Henry, the columnist for The Bakersfield Californian, has consistently called for an outright ban of all fireworks with the exception of professional displays. Henry runs a Facebook page that advocates the ban of fireworks.