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4th of July fire calls spike; more than double last year’s totals

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Photo by Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images

SEATTLE — First responders from all around the Puget Sound say they fielded a massive amount of calls this Independence Day.

King County fire agencies responded to more than 500 incidents on July 4, up from about 200 in 2014.

Exactly how many of those calls were related to illegal fireworks is unknown, but some fire departments said they actually noticed fewer people igniting them this year overall.

Agencies in other cities reported heavy fireworks use and say their emergency crews were stretched pretty thin just keeping up with the amount of calls.

As dry conditions are expected to continue, fire crews are bracing to tackle even more flames in the days ahead.

“People are asked to be extra vigilant, as critical fire weather can produce active fire behavior and rapid spread of flames,” said Dave Nelson, with the King County Fire Chiefs Association.

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  • Cheryl

    Any word on governors end. We want state wide ban except New Years. Don’t care for this kind of fireworks. Public display.
    This is hard enough on our pets too which upsets them greatly.
    What does it take. Look at destruction already caused and still underway. The majority wants this and should prevail.

    • hellomurica

      Not necessary to ban them. People actually enjoy setting them off. I guess you just don’t like people having fun.

      • MtnViewGal

        Explosives are destructive. Turn on TV for firework shows or Learn a new way to have “fun” other than possibly destroying other peoples property, endangering or injuring yourself, firefighters or others, scaring or injuring animals, and destroying beautiful natural settings….Or signup at the local recruiting station for overseas duty……

        • dg54321

          No. Screw your elitist BS. Your pets are your problem, not ours. And people are perfectly capable of using fireworks safely in a way that doesn’t risk a fire. If they’re using them irresponsibly, then punish those individuals, not society as a whole. This is the same non-logic as gun control.

          • MtnViewGal

            No, it is not the same as Responsible Gun Ownership. Irresponsible fireworks ignitions more than doubled this year. Those that use fireworks responsibly are a minority, whereas, Responsible Gun Owners are a majority. Get your facts straight.

          • dg54321

            LOL whatever fantasy you want to sell yourself….the fact that the state is still largely not on fire is testament to how wrong you are.

        • hellomurica

          And they have also been a part of the 4th of July celebration for decades on end. Tens of millions of people set them off every 4th without incident. Just because you’re part of an entitled generation who’s afraid of their own shadow doesn’t give you the right to force your cowardice on everyone else.

  • Justsaying

    Fireworks happen what a few times a year? There is ways to take care of your pets through the fireworks. My family had 5 dogs with us and all of them did great during the show. Not to mention, if you think about cigarette butts being thrown out of the car window starts more brush fires than fireworks.