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City of Santa Clarita Press Release

Enjoy Fourth of July Responsibly

By City Manager Ken Striplin

By day, the sounds of music and laughter fill the streets as we celebrate Independence Day in true Santa Clarita fashion with the annual Fourth of July Parade. By night, we come together as a community and watch as the sky ignites with flashes of color, ending the day of festivities with the Spirit of America Fireworks Spectacular. As we spend the day commemorating our freedom, it is important to keep safety in mind. Please remember that all fireworks are illegal in the City of Santa Clarita, including those marked “safe and sane.”

According to MySafe:LA, approximately 19,500 reported fires are started by fireworks each year. Grass, brush, natural or vegetation and waste fires accounted for the majority of these calls. With our record-breaking rainfall this year, our lush, green hillsides will begin to dry up in the summer sun, leaving us susceptible to wildfires. It is important to keep in mind that even the smallest spark can ignite a devastating blaze.

Fireworks come in all shapes and sizes, with some looking more innocent than others. One such firework is the sparkler, which can cause serious injury. The National Safety Council reports that sparklers make up 25 percent of emergency room visits for fireworks injuries. Of those injuries, nearly half are sustained by children under the age of five. Sparklers burn very hot and can quickly ignite clothing. They can also leave severe burns on exposed skin, such as hands, face and feet. Consider using glow sticks or confetti cannons as safe alternatives.

Not only can fireworks cause injury or damage to property, but we ask you to keep in mind those with sound sensitivities. The loud popping of fireworks can trigger PTSD for our Veterans, who have fought so hard to provide us with the freedom we celebrate. Another vulnerable population are our pets. Many animals become frightened by the loud noises, running away from their homes. July 5 has consistently been the busiest day for animal care centers, due to the dogs and cats who fled from the safety of their homes.

Residents can report illegal firework use at any time by calling the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station non-emergency line at (661) 260-4000 or by entering a report into the City’s Resident Services Center at SantaClarita.gov/RSC. Please keep in mind that reports will not result in an immediate response. However, these calls are imperative in helping our local Sheriff’s Department to identify hotspots in our community. Please call 9-1-1 only for life-threatening situations.

I encourage residents and their families to join us this year at the annual Spirit of America Fireworks Spectacular, kicking off around 9:15 p.m. and watch the night sky light up over Valencia Town Center. Elevate the experience by tuning in to KHTS on AM 1220, who will be broadcasting a patriotic soundtrack paired with the show.

This Fourth of July, keep your friends, family and community safe, and leave the fireworks to the professionals. For more info about fireworks rules and laws, please visit SantaClarita.gov/Emergency-Management. I hope to see you all at our Fourth of July Parade and the Spirit of America Fireworks Spectacular. Happy Independence Day!

Ken Striplin is the City Manager for the City of Santa Clarita and can be reached at kstriplin@santaclarita.gov.

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