The Abilene Fire Department said Monday it has a plan to keep people safe during the 4th of July fireworks show at Nelson Park.
"This year we will have a booster at the fireworks location at Nelson Park on standby," Firefighter J. Sanders said.
Sanders said the fire department always has five boosters on call at all times during the year. But firefighters want to be extra careful during the July 4th celebrations.
"We can get to any location in Abilene in a matter of a few minutes," Sanders said.
Even though it is illegal to set off fireworks within the city limits, Sanders said the fire department always anticipates grass fires.
In fact, firefighters said fireworks likely caused the two acre grass fire near Westmoreland Street in Abilene that broke out last week.
"We always hope and encourage people and our citizens to make good judgement," Sanders said.
That means having water nearby, avoiding high wind or dry conditions and making sure an adult is present.
While fireworks are fun, setting them off can mean stiff legal penalties for those who are not careful.
"If you cause a grass fire and it extends to a neighbors property, you are responsible for any damage that does occur," Sanders said.
Illegal use of fireworks or property damage as a result of their use can lead to Class C Misdemeanor charges. Those charges could come with fines up to $500 or even jail time.
Fireworks can also cause serious--even fatal--injuries.
"They don't always detonate the way they're supposed to," Sanders said. "Don't point them at each other."
Barbecuing is one other popular activity that can cause fires. But only lidded barbeque pits are legal within the city limits.