Fireworks In Burleigh County Go Up In Smoke (Morton Too)
It's going to be a quiet 4th of July.
Burleigh County has banned the use of fireworks anywhere in the county until further notice. According to an email obtained from Mary Senger, Burleigh County Emergency Manager, effective immediately, Burleigh County has banned the discharge of fireworks within Burleigh County regardless of the North Dakota Fire Danger Index.
The City of Bismarck has permanent burn restrictions in place through an adopted fire code and “The sale, possession or discharge of fireworks within the City of Bismarck is prohibited.” The Cities of Lincoln, Regan, Wilton, and Wing can set restrictions on their respective jurisdictions regarding fireworks. (You might be able to shoot fireworks off in those cities limits?) You'll need to check with your local jurisdictions before discharging fireworks.
The driving force behind this mandate?
Burleigh County Rural Fire Chiefs support the ban on fireworks due to current drought conditions (Extreme and Exceptional) and rural fire activity. We've currently had more than 1,400 hundred fires in the state so far since January 1st.
Public display/commercial use of fireworks are authorized with an approved permit from their governing jurisdiction:
Burleigh County Planning Department or organized township. That means as of now, you can expect your city fireworks shows to still be a go. However, that will depend on the city and the amount of precipitation we get going forward. The city of Lincoln is also banning fireworks. The Mayor of Lincoln said the city will follow the what Burleigh County is doing. He's not willing to risk somebody's personal property for somebody's entertainment.
So, what if you decide to be a rebel and shoot off your fireworks anyway. What happens if you get caught? The penalty for violation of this burn ban is a Class B Misdemeanor. (NDCC 37-17.1-10.1) Maximum sentence of 30 days in jail and $1,500 fine. Boom! That's a stiff penalty, just to blow something up.
The city of Mandan has also outlawed fireworks this year.
That was announced on Tuesday. Since then, Morton County has followed suit like Burleigh County and has outlawed the use of fireworks in the county as well. Public Display/Commercial use of fireworks which have been approved by permits issued from the Morton County Sheriff’s Office are still authorized.
Yep, it's going to be a very quiet 4th of July.