PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The Fourth is almost here and do-it-yourself pyrotechnic enthusiasts are stocking up.
It’s the second year since legalization of most of these products and Anthony Forbes is loading up his cart with $800 dollars worth of once-illegal fireworks.
KDKA’s Andy Sheehan: It’s quite a bit of stuff here.
Anthony Forbes: Yeah, well they like the colorful stuff and we usually have a pretty good crowd in our house.
Pyrotechnic fireworks are now legal in Pennsylvania and that means bumper business at places like Phantom Fireworks in Monroeville, but it’s also a concern to fire officials.
It used to be you could only buy glorified sparkler products in Pennsylvania, but now firecrackers, roman candles, bottle rockets and fireworks that contain a maximum of 50 milligrams of explosive material are legal.
And last year, Allegheny County Fire Chief Matt Brown saw an uptick in incidents.
“I’m certain that there were additional fires and injuries. I know nationally there are about sixteen thousand injuries every Fourth of July related to fireworks.”
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Some of these products shoot fireballs 150 feet in the air and Phantom Fireworks urges safety.
But Chief Brown has other advice.
“There are a lot of fantastic, commercially, professionally provided fireworks show,” he says.
“I would highly recommend attending one of those.”
Andy Sheehan: Don’t try this at home.
Chief Brown: Absolutely.