Fireworks Sales, Complaints, and Citations - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Fireworks Sales, Complaints, and Citations

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The sky lit up with fireworks all around town Thursday night. While fireworks are illegal in the city limits of Billings, that didn't stop the 4th of July Celebrations in Yellowstone County.

Last year, the county and nearly half a dozen surrounding counties went under Stage Two fire restrictions, the most restrictive ordinance a county can apply. Among other things, the ordinance prohibits the use of fireworks. It all but shut down fireworks sales in the region. Vendors say sales are up from last year, but still not near where they should be.

"They were better of course than last year from the band. A lot of people still thought they were worried about the ban so they really held off this year until the very end to buy. Much better sales, but we're still down this year," said Jeff Kern, a fireworks vendor.

Billings Police Chief Rich St. John says in 2011, they received 244 fireworks complaints, 118 last year, and 245 this year. One hundred four tickets were issued in 2011, 12 last year, and 29 this year.