Banning the sale of fireworks in Utah — a reader conversation

Saturday , July 15, 2017 - 4:00 AM3 comments

GREG HALLING, Standard-Examiner Staff

In a July 13 letter to the editor, Thomas S. Ball of North Ogden called for outlawing the sale of fireworks in Utah.

Ball praised Sen. Joel Briscoe of Salt Lake City for proposing a ban on the use of fireworks by private individuals.

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“Yet to cut off the head of the fireworks snake,” Ball wrote, “we have to have a statewide ban on sales.”

Here’s how readers reacted to the letter when we shared it on Facebook. All quotes are verbatim:

Mitchell Brewer: Utah just legalized aerial fireworks a few years ago (2011). Why create a law legalizing them, only to make another law banning them a few years later? If anyone doesn't like fireworks, they could try moving to a state which already has a ban on them. However the options are limited as America loves fireworks!

Ed Eldredge: Oh, how I adore the trusty old, "If you don't like it, then move!" argument, because it means so much and never gets old!

Casey Lee Hennessy: This isn't Donald Trump it's fireworks. No one is going to move over fireworks. What a ridiculous comment. Lol.

Kristina Wilson: I think they should ban them only when the fire danger is extreme... like now. And better ways to enforce the restricted areas.

Luke Draayer: I love blaming a majority for the actions of a minority.

Craig Corless: Actually, it is about protecting people from others, majority or not.

Adam Green: So let's think about this for a minute. The reports are that there were 88 fires in Weber, Davis, and Morgan counties combined on the 4th of July and "most" of those were fireworks related, so really less than 88 fires in those 3 counties combined were started by fireworks. Now I think it's pretty safe to say that the number of people lighting them during the holiday was easily in the 10's of thousands. So just for for fun let's throw some numbers out and say 75 fires started from fireworks as 20,000 people were lighting them. That would mean less than 1% of the population started the fires. Ya know what that tells me? An OVERWHELMING majority of the people use them responsibly and respect the restrictions. But clearly fireworks will be the end of Utah's existence.

Craig Corless: regardless of ratio, 75 fires from adult kids playing with incendiary toys? How is taking away childish vices compared to people losing their entire homes even a valid question for grown ups?

Eric Tam: You snowflakes can run to Canada, and we'll enjoy our fireworks and patriotism.

Casey Lee Hennessy: Lmao, it's fireworks, I'm sure there are other ways to celebrate patriotism. Like not telling people to leave the country because of firework beliefs.

Craig Corless: How patriotic to give a crap about those around you that are affected by your choices in playing with your little fire toys.

Drew Johnson: Ban them! Noise smoke trash scared animals fires lost fingers hands eyes, homes, etc.

Tyson Parry: Liberal.

Judes Viskoe: Tyson Parry, I agree and I'm not a liberal. They cause a lot of damage.

Stephanie Hoeg: Not everyone is stupid with fireworks, sober people and drunk people who misuse fireworks cause the fires. Why should my child stop enjoy watching fireworks at home where we do them safely because of the few idiots who chose to not use fireworks as described.

Ed Eldredge: How many dry fields and structures must burn to the ground so your kid can enjoy a display of pyrotechnics? There's no shortage of public shows in Utah where everyone can enjoy the spectacle. Your point is moot.

Casey Lee Hennessy: I'm fine with a ban, but more for the noise. Perhaps just ban them on neighborhood streets. Open marked areas for firework usage during certain hours. I get having fun with family during July here in utah, but fireworks at all hours of the night gets ridiculous.

Naomi Savage Weiss: Why take away fireworks from people who are actually responsible with them? Its not fair to ban them because some are not responsible with them. My son loves them and looks forward to them every year.

Brad Floyd: Nah, totally worth burning down a few houses and apartment buildings, not to mention forests and range lands.

Renee Simons: I don't care if my neighbors have fireworks, I just don't care to hear them 7 days straight at midnight every night. Instead of banning them, the police should fine people for violating the noise ordinance. You'd think the cities would enjoy the revenue this would generate.

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