It looks like drought is back upon us here in Bexar and the surrounding counties. With the new laws in Texas, counties have a good amount more freedom to regulate fireworks in times of extreme drought. Here’s a couple of updates on what we know
Bexar County (San Antonio, TX) is restricting the use of 1.4g/”consumer” fireworks to the Shooter’s Sites provided by Alamo and other vendors this season. The county is also prohibiting the use and sale of Stick Rockets, Missiles with Fins, and Helicopter/Winged items. Basically, if an item shoots up in the air, it’s OK. If an item propels itself into the air, then it is not OK for this season. You (as always) can buy our products and store for use when it’s green again. State law only prohibits when we can sell, but fireworks can be used year-round in any location where not prohibited by city ordinances. Finally, we’re developing an educational program with the county fire marshal’s office to have handouts and posters on fireworks safety.
Comal County (New Braunfels, TX) is the most aggressive against fireworks of any county in the state. Sadly, we’re the biggest vendor in Comal so we get the hardest hit. Anyway, unless it rains, they plan to stop all sale and use of *any* firework in the County. We’ve tried to discuss this with the county folks but they’re not much for talking. We’ve offered Shooter’s Sites, waivers, public education, restrict items we can sell, and so on. Any fireworks fans should call or write the office of County Judge Danny Scheel and explain that controlling how and what fireworks are sold, and educating the public is much better than outright prohibition. As it is now, folks will just drive out of the county to buy and then shoot off in Comal with no education and no place to shoot.
Guadalupe County (Seguin, TX) & Medina County (Castroville, TX, Devine, TX & Hondo, TX) issued a proclamation on Friday declaring a disaster to stop all sale and use of *any* fireworks (aerial or not). Come visit us in other (more rational) counties.
Other Counties: Most other counties in the area with high drought indices have adopted the standard stick rocket and missile restriction. This is commonly called an “aerial fireworks ban” but that’s misleading. Only items that are flying fireworks are banned. For the consumer, it’s easy as we won’t stock any illegal items in a particular county.
Pray for rain! – Michael