Practical ideas for regulating fireworks

Saturday, August 9, 2003

Jackson is moving closer to stricter regulations for fireworks after careful consideration by the board of aldermen.

Board members seem to be handling the issue well, launching their discussion after a firefighter whose home was burned down by a misdirected bottle rocket asked them to take up the matter.

Because of that 20-cent firework, there is a concrete slab where John Trowbridge's home used to be.

Most admirable is that Cape Girardeau is coordinating its review of fireworks regulations with Jackson so residents won't be tempted to simply pass a city limits sign to buy and use the devices.

Fireworks dealer Richard Hoffman seems to have some good ideas, which he presented to the board this week.

He wants the board to raise the age for buying fireworks to 16 from 14, which means buyers would have to have driver's licenses to present when making a purchase. And eliminate the sale and use of flying rockets, which are most likely to land on roofs and elsewhere and cause a disaster.

These regulations would allow everyone to celebrate but avoid most of the problems.

It isn't too late for residents to weigh in on the matter by contacting their aldermen. The outcome will likely affect how they celebrate America's independence next year.

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