April fireworks show in Londonderry sparks review of regulations
On April 27, the N.H. Pyrotechnics Association sponsored a three-hour event that town officials said prompted nearly 200 complaint calls from neighbors in Londonderry as well as Litchfield and Derry.
During a lengthy discussion at Monday night's Town Council meeting, O'Brien and Fire Inspector Brian Johnson said they would like to see the use of class B fireworks limited to "town-sponsored" events in the future.
The town ordinance permits the use of class B fireworks, also known as special or display fireworks, for a $1,000 fee. Town officials said that fee would be waived should the policy be changed to permit only "town-sponsored" events.
Class C fireworks, also known as consumer or common fireworks, are the types typically sold in Granite State retail shops. Consumer displays featuring more than $500 worth of fireworks are currently subject to a $50 fee per event.
Those proposed changes also include the elimination of the $50 fees, specifying the times when class C fireworks may be used and requiring fire department detail during any class B, town-sponsored public fireworks displays.
"This is what we're trying to get away from," Johnson said. "Still it's a concern because you really can't put a price on safety. We've seen kids get hurt pretty bad and set a half-acre of brush on fire all from using a sparkler."
Council Chairman John Farrell said a final draft of the proposed policy changes would need to be finalized via a public hearing at an upcoming meeting.
As it stands now, the police department is kept pretty busy during the warmer months when it comes to fireworks complaints.