Fourth of July celebrants in Hemphill County should keep in mind during the holiday weekend that the only place fireworks may legally be discharged is on private property beyond the city limits.
Chapter 5 of Canadian’s code of ordinances, titled “Fire Prevention and Protection,” prohibits both the sale and discharge of fireworks within the city limits or on city-owned property, and stipulates that anyone violating those provisions will be subject to a fine not to exceed $2,000.
Hemphill County also has a long-standing ban on the discharge of fireworks on county-owned property. Violators of that ban are also subject to a fine.
The only place fireworks can lawfully be discharged in Hemphill County is on private property, and with the express permission of the property owner.
The sole exception to the ban on county-owned property is granted to Canadian’s Volunteer Fire Department members, who each year stage a free public fireworks display at the county recreation complex, east of the Canadian Rodeo Arena.
In a cautionary note, Texas A&M Forest Service urged caution this week with outdoor activities such as grilling, campfires and fireworks. According to the National Fire Protection Association, more fires are reported on July 4th than any other day of the year. Fireworks account for 2 out of 5 of those fires.
Due to the recent rains in May and June, the potential for wildfire has decreased across much of the state. However, Texas A&M Forest Service encourages everyone to use caution and stay safe this Independence Day.
“Though the rains have helped decrease wildfire potential, it has produced a lot of tall grass across the state this summer,” said Tom Spencer, TFS predictive services department head. “It’s best to play it safe and avoid these areas for your fireworks fun—especially when using aerials.”