San José officials urge fireworks safety amid high fire risk

July 5, 2024

Officials highlight fireworks safety measures for Fourth of July

On Tuesday, July 2, officials from the City of San José held a press conference at Lake Cunningham Park to discuss fireworks safety ahead of the Fourth of July celebrations.

As reported by The City of San José Fire Department, the event featured remarks from Mayor Matt Mahan, Council members Domingo Candelas and David Cohen, and Fire Chief Robert Sapien, Jr.

The speakers emphasized the dangers of illegal fireworks and the precautions the community should take to ensure a safe holiday.

Mayor Mahan began by updating the public on the status of cooling centers across San José due to the ongoing heatwave.

He then addressed the importance of fireworks safety: “As we celebrate the Fourth of July, it’s both a time to have a great time, celebrate, enjoy a special holiday with family, but also a really important moment to remind people to stay safe,” said Mayor Mahan.

He stressed the need for caution given the extreme heat and dry vegetation, which increase the risk of fires.

Efforts to reduce illegal fireworks usage

Councilmembers Domingo Candelas and David Cohen have been actively supporting initiatives by the San José Fire Department (SJFD) and San José Police Department (SJPD) to curb the use of illegal fireworks.

Councilmember Candelas announced East San José’s first free professional fireworks show at Lake Cunningham Park, organized by his office.

Councilmember Cohen discussed the new fireworks signage designed to raise awareness in parks located in high-risk areas.

The city is implementing several measures to deter the use of illegal fireworks, including publicizing the dangers they pose to life, property, and the environment.

Additionally, there are significant penalties for violators and promotion of free family-friendly professional shows.

Transportation and logistics for the fireworks event

Councilmember Candelas provided detailed information regarding transportation to the Lake Cunningham Park event.

“We hope everyone can take public transit, with routes 22, 26, 70, and 71 easily accessible nearby.

And those driving, parking will not be available on-site, so it’s important that you park nearby at Eastridge Mall, which we’ve already arranged a free shuttle for, and also at the YMCA,” he stated.

This ensures that attendees can safely and conveniently reach the event.

Fire safety and reporting resources

Fire Chief Robert Sapien emphasized the heightened fire risks this year due to high temperatures and dry conditions.

“Today, I want to point out that as we enter this Fourth of July, local conditions including high temperatures and especially high fuels pose a particularly high threat to community and firefighter safety,” Chief Sapien explained.

He highlighted the exacerbating effect of fireworks on these conditions and encouraged the community to utilize available resources to report illegal fireworks and ensure safety.

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