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What can police do about fireworks?

Posted at 7:04 PM, Jun 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-22 19:05:04-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The loud booms. We all hear them, but rarely see those fireworks in the sky. When you call for a noise complaint, police deal with the issue of locating the fireworks. Fireworks are illegal in New York. Sparkling devices are not.

“I know when it's around the 4th you spend some extra time with the dogs. You know it's coming. It's really been close to six weeks and it's constant. It's every night and it's not normal fireworks,”

Rachel lives in the West Seneca, South Buffalo area. She has a 2-year-old and a 3-year-old who have both been up all hours of the night.​

“Especially over the weekend when they're going off from 8 p.m. to 3 a.m. Sometimes it does affect the 1-year-old can't fall asleep because of the loud noises,”​ Rachel said.

If it's not the fireworks waking the kids, it's the dogs.​

“I have two hundred pound dogs and the one is barking like crazy and you have the other one who is shaking like crazy hiding in a closet,” said Rachel.​

Captain Jeff Rinaldo said the Buffalo Police Department is experiencing an uptick in fireworks related calls.​

“Definitely calls are skyrocketing,” Captain Rinaldo said.

Captain Rinaldo said police are dispatched in order of priority.​

“The goal is to have a conversation, get someone to comply and agree to stop shooting them off and if that doesn't work then you know potentially issue a noise ordinance violation,”​ said Captain Rinaldo.

But Rinaldo said police face a massive challenge: finding the fireworks in time. If they don't catch anyone red handed they’re hands may be tied.

“They're kind of tied. I mean you can't start searching somebody's property without a search warrant,”​ Captain Rinaldo said.

He said if you happen to know someone setting off fireworks, have a conversation, explain how this affects your family, and hopefully that person will decide to be a good neighbor.​

“You should be a better neighbor. You should think about others,” said Rachel.