As the Fourth of July approaches, Perry has plans to enact a fireworks ordinance this upcoming Monday evening at the regular City Council meeting. Across Iowa, ordinances have been made as a way to keep both the city safe and intact after a bill was passed to legalize fireworks across Iowa.
The Perry City Council recently met for a work session after deciding it was necessary after questions were raised about the ordinance. According to City Administrator, Sven Peterson, the ordinance is expected to detail what time fireworks are able to be shot off, where they can and cannot occur, how old the participant must be, as well as the fine if any regulations are violated.
Perry’s ordinance will limit the day of recreational fireworks use to just the Fourth of July from 4 to 11 p.m., as well as limit the area in which fireworks can be shot off at.
“You can’t be on public property — so parks, street sidewalks, the cemetery — and you can’t shoot them off within 200 yards of the hospital or senior care facility,” Peterson said.
Those who wish to shoot off fireworks must be at least 18 years old and cannot be under the influence of drugs or above the legal alcohol limit.
“In this ordinance, if you violate anything, it’s a fine of $500 dollars,” Peterson said.
Perry Fire Department Chief Chris Hinds wants users to be careful as small factors such as wind can affect the direction of the firework.
“You cannot control - no matter how hard you try - you cannot control where they’ll [fireworks, firecrackers] end up,” Hinds said. “Just shooting up in the air, no one can control that.”
In a previous city council meeting, Chief Eric Vaughn of the Perry Police Department expressed concerns of past instances where fireworks were shot off in parks, sometimes present around small children.
“I just cringe at the thought of kids playing with firecrackers,” Hinds said.
For those who decide they’re going to partake in recreational fireworks, Chief Hinds asks users to recognize your surroundings and take precautions.
“Be mindful of your surroundings or neighborhood,” Hinds said. “Make sure that you are prepared to do what you are going to do; you’ve take the necessary safety precautions, pets are put away, kids are back and not around.”
“Keep yourself, your family, and everyone else involved safe and out of harm.”