The Fourth of July falls on a Monday in 2011, and during the preceding weekend, area fire marshals will be patrolling looking for illegal fireworks.
"When it comes to fireworks, you light it, we'll write it," Montgomery County Fire Chief Richard Bowers says.
Depending on the jurisdiction, fines range from $500 to over $2,000. Items such as ground effects, Roman candles, M-80s and quartersticks are illegal. Bowers says even the legal stuff is dangerous. A new item for 2011 is something called a "Fire Crackle."
"It's much like a sparkler or a snap pop. But it's still very dangerous. Young kids, and even adults, who use this could misfire of misuse, and that can lead to an injury," he says.
Bowers adds the Fourth of July is the busiest day for fire departments across the nation, solely because of the amount of fireworks-related incidents.**Using a watermelon, a simulation shows the dangers of fireworks:**