BUFFALO(WKBW) It can be a dangerous combination. The recent weather in Western New York drying out lawns, fields, and parks, mixed together with fireworks and it could spell disaster.
The risk of fireworks is inherent; blowing something up to make a big flash or a loud bang. So authorities want residents to know that they are illegal, and they are dangerous.
"There is potential for fire hazards. We had garage fires last year, because of citizens possessing fireworks and shooting them off, it did cause a few fires last year," Chief Mark Morganti of the fire prevention unit of the Buffalo Fire Department said.
"We see a lot of injuries to the hands and face, because the kids are picking things up or attracted to things, the small toddlers. The older kids end up with explosions to the face," Trauma Director at Women and Children's Hospital Kathryn Bass said.
But shooting burning sparks through the air can be even more dangerous this year.
"Definitely there is more potential because everything is so dry. That's why we say leave it to the professionals, they are licensed, they are trained to shoot off the fireworks," Chief Morganti said.
Companies like Skylighters of New York, who operate many of the local firework displays in the area, have to take extra safety precautions when conditions are so dry.
"Safety is number one," Matthew Shaw of Skylighters said, "the fire department will be there prior to the lighting of the show and we will wet down the entire fallout zone."
And despite the rain that moved through the area on Tuesday, experts at the National Weather Service say the risk of fires based on dry conditions is still very high this 4th of July.