Fire officials hope for a safe and legal July 4th - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE;

Fire officials hope for a safe and legal July 4th

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By: Brittany Paris

The 4th of July is just around the corner. For many that means barbecues, parades and you guessed it, fireworks.

But almost every year, we hear of firework related injuries.

Don Gross, Fire Inspector, said state laws are put in place for our safety. They were changed in 2010, legalizing more fireworks.

"The only things that are illegal now in the state and the city are bottle rockets and sparklers," Gross said.

He said only colored sparklers are illegal right now, but gold and silver ones will be outlawed in 2014.

"You can actually build bombs out of sparklers," Gross said.

But besides bottle rockets and sparklers, any fireworks that are bought in another state and brought here is illegal.

We spotted a billboard on S. 14th advertising fireworks in Missouri. It says "Home of the Really Good Stuff. Not Available in Nebraska."

If caught, your illegal fireworks could be confiscated, you could get a fine and in some cases, it's a felony. Gross said in Lincoln, the main concern is safety.

He said most injuries happen when someone takes a legal firework and uses it incorrectly.

Gross said use them the way they manufacturer designed them to be used.

When lighting something, use a long lighter or a punk so you don't burn yourself. And always supervise children.

Gross said if you think someone is using illegal fireworks, don't hesitate to call 911.

You can legally buy fireworks in Lincoln July 3 and 4. Vendors outside the city can sell them for ten days. That begins on Tuesday.

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