Albuquerque Fire Rescue talks firework safety

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Albuquerque Fire Rescue says every year they set out to educate people about illegal fireworks they may be using. 

On Friday, AFR said the Foothills, the bosque and open spaces in Albuquerque are in Stage 1 fire restrictions.  That means no fires at all in those areas. 

“Beware that if you’re caught using illegal fireworks within the city limits, you may be fined up to $500 and up to 90 days in jail,” said AFR Deputy Chief Fire Marshal Chris Romero. 

A fire happened just days ago in Ventana Ranch, and it shows what not to do if you’re lighting fireworks. 

“Any firework that goes higher than 10 feet outside a six-foot radius, and they’re louder than a cap gun are illegal,” said Romero. 

Any fireworks bought outside Albuquerque city limits or unincorporated areas are illegal. 

“We want to educate the public on what to do and what not to do. So we issued a strong warning, you’re on our radar that you’re using those illegal fireworks,” Romero said. 

He says if you have to light fireworks be respectful of nearby pets or neighbors with PTSD.

Last year, the city fielded more than 4,000 reports of fireworks. Romero says just because AFR chooses to educate, doesn’t mean they won’t give you a citation. 

“We can typically go to straight to citation if we need to. But like I said, we want to err on the side of caution, educate, and we also have the ability to confiscate those fireworks as well. So that’s another thing in addition to giving that citation,” said Romero. 

City officials say your best bet is using the app or website to report illegal fireworks so the phone lines don’t get backed up. 

You can report illegal firework use through the CABQ 311 app, website, or call 311.

Click here for more information on firework ordinance and safety.