Durand: Fireworks ‘out of hand’

By TEREASA NIMS
Sunday Times Newspapers

RIVERVIEW — Mayor Tim Durand said fireworks are among the top complaint of residents, but cities have their hands tied in terms of adopting ordinances.

“It’s gotten out of hand and gotten crazy,” Durand said.

“One of the biggest complaints as a council member is the firework law that passed a couple of years ago,” Durand said. “I get a lot of complaints about it mostly from people with dogs scared to death and babies, from the stuff that goes on forever.”

Durand said Councilman Thomas Coffee has one of the best trained dogs ever, but the fireworks caused a change.

“He was so scared by the fireworks this weekended that he busted the screen in a sliding door, jumped over a fence, got loose and actually crossed Sibley Road,” Durand said of Coffees’ dog. “Luckily he didn’t get hit.

“But that’s just an example of what short sightedness our legislatiors in Michigan did. For $11 million in tax revenue they’ve turned things crazy.”

In 2012, Michigan lifted the laws banning consumer fireworks and enabling the sale of bottle rockets, sky rockets, firecrackers, Roman candles, missle-type rockets and others.

As of June 2013, The Michigan Fireworks Safety Act allowed cities to restrict usage of fireworks from 1 to 8 a.m., but they can’t ban usage. Violators could face a $500 fine.

“They just went on forever,” said Councilman Elmer Trombley, adding that he, too, likes fireworks.

Yet, Coffee’s dog is not fond of them.

Coffee, with the help of a neighbor, found the dog within two hours. He said the dog’s heart was racing and he was scared. But he’s now home safe.

“Everything turned out well,” Coffee said.

(Tereasa Nims can be reached at tnims@bewickpublications.com.)

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