fbpx
Climate crisis and migration: Greta Thunberg supports International Organization for Migration (IOM) over ‘life and death’ issueRead more United Nations (UN) Convenes Lake Chad Countries, Amid Growing Regional CrisisRead more 11 Disruptive Startups Selected for Cohort 3 of the Africa Startup Initiative Program (ASIP) Accelerator Program powered by Startupbootcamp AfricaRead more Africa Data Centres breaks ground on new Sameer facility in NairobiRead more Coffee with a human face: A union that improves livelihoods for Ugandan farmersRead more Trends Predicted to drive the retail industry in 2023Read more Vantage Capital exits Pétro IvoireRead more Afrobarometer charts path for Round 10 surveysRead more Unified communication and collaboration trends for 2023 (By David Meintjes)Read more 2023 starts with BIG IMPACT on Bizcommunity!Read more

Parched Los Angeles launches fireworks buyback program ahead of July 4

show caption
July 4 fireworks explode over Los Angeles in 2020./AFP
Print Friendly and PDF

Jun 30, 2021 - 09:30 AM

LOS ANGELES — The drought-plagued city of Los Angeles announced a fireworks buyback program would be held Wednesday ahead of the US July 4 holiday, hoping to rein in the explosives’ illegal use in a setup similar to gun buyback programs.

The initiative will make it possible to anonymously hand in fireworks — whose sale and use are banned in the city — to the police in exchange for baseball tickets and other gifts.

The majority of California is under extreme drought conditions, according to the US Drought Monitor, creating parched vegetation and conditions ripe for wildfires.

“Last year with the pandemic and the necessity of canceling public-sanctioned fireworks shows, we saw a 72 percent increase in calls” concerning illegal fireworks, Los Angeles Police Department chief Michel Moore said.

In total more than 6,000 calls were received and more than four tons of fireworks were seized, he said.

The buyback program is targeting the San Fernando Valley north of Los Angeles in particular, an arid area susceptible to fires.

In addition to increased risk of fire and injury, fireworks launched by individuals also aggravate air pollution. According to air quality control authorities, the concentration of fine particles in the air on the night on July 4, 2020 was 70 percent higher than in previous years.

Moore warned that police would act against retailers and manufacturers who sell the products illegally.

Last week the Los Angeles city attorney ordered major internet platforms — including Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist — to remove posts selling fireworks within Los Angeles or face legal action.

The city of Pomona, east of Los Angeles, is offering a $500 reward for information leading to the arrest of people selling or storing fireworks illegally.

In neighboring Ontario, two people died last March when a large stock of fireworks exploded in the house they were in.

MAORANDCITIES.COM uses both Facebook and Disqus comment systems to make it easier for you to contribute. We encourage all readers to share their views on our articles and blog posts. All comments should be relevant to the topic. By posting, you agree to our Privacy Policy. We are committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion, so we ask you to avoid personal attacks, name-calling, foul language or other inappropriate behavior. Please keep your comments relevant and respectful. By leaving the ‘Post to Facebook’ box selected – when using Facebook comment system – your comment will be published to your Facebook profile in addition to the space below. If you encounter a comment that is abusive, click the “X” in the upper right corner of the Facebook comment box to report spam or abuse. You can also email us.