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Police reminder: Fireworks no longer allowed in Elizabethton

John Thompson • Jun 22, 2018 at 11:17 PM

ELIZABETHTON — There will be a big change in the way citizens in Elizabethton will be able to celebrate the Fourth of July this year, and Police Chief Jason Shaw sent out a press release Friday to remind everyone of the change.

Shaw wrote “Due to seasonal fireworks sales beginning in our area for the 4th of July holiday period, the Elizabethton Police Department wishes to remind the residents and visitors … that this past September there was a change in the city of Elizabethton Municipal Code regarding the use of fireworks.

“The possession, sale, discharge and storage of fireworks in the city limit … is no longer permissible at any time without special permit from the fire marshal.”

The new ordinance specifies that the fire marshal may allow public or private displays of fireworks when the provisions of the National Fire Protection Association codes and Tennessee Law have been met. Such displays are only permissible when a “competent operator” approved by the fire marshal is in place to oversee the display.

The change in the city ordinance came about after several years of appearances by private citizen Carl Peters after holidays in which fireworks were allowed. Peters citied the potential fire dangers and disturbance of the peace.

Although Peters has since died, his complaint was taken up by other citizens in recent years, especially complaints that the fireworks were being discharged during early morning hours when the ordinance indicated they were not supposed to be used.

The new ordinance supersedes an ordinance passed in 2007, which made it legal to set off fireworks from June 20 to July 5 and from Dec. 10 through Jan. 2.

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