Lexington Adds Fireworks To Burn Ban

Jul 2, 2012

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Lexingonians hoping to mark the Fourth of July holiday with personal fireworks displays will have to wait out the heat this year. Mayor Jim Gray has implemented a total ban on all common consumer fireworks.

The ban, which began at 2 PM Monday, will remain in effect until the Division of Fire and Emergency Services lifts an outdoor burning ban it issued last week. Triple digit temperatures on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday marked the hottest three-day stretch on record in Lexington since 1936 and grass fires have shot up from a handful to 135 in the past two weeks.

Mayor Gray said this year celebrations should take a back seat to safety.

"The decision we're announcing today won't be popular with everyone, but it's the right thing to do, the safe thing to do. We must do what we can to stop fires before they start," Gray said at a press conference.

The ban applies to all fireworks – except those that will be used in officially permitted displays, such as the downtown show on July 4thand Red, White, and Boom on July 7that Whitaker Bank Ballpark. With temperatures expected to stay above 90 for the next week, officials say they have no target date yet to end the ban.  

Those caught setting off non-permitted fireworks will face a $100 fine for a first offense.