At least twice a year (4th of July and New Year's Eve) it has become traditional to let off fireworks. The law is strict about what kind of fireworks are legal for the public to own or set off, and our police departments remind citizens about them.
This July 4th week, it was clear that a number of illegal fireworks were being set off. Some were commercial-style mortar rockets, and some were extremely loud explosions. I called the MSO office to report illegal rockets in Northwest Bradenton. The person on the phone could hear the explosions as they burst overhead.
On July 5, I saw that my car had a clay-like splatter all across the roof and windshield (not from a bottle rocket). When I washed it off, it revealed a dent in the roof of my car. This was pretty obviously from a big firework.
The Bradenton Herald reported that Bradenton Beach police confiscated some fireworks, but wrote no citations. I contacted the Manatee Clerk's Office, where all county-related citations end up (unless they are simply infractions of local ordinances.) I was told there were no tickets written for fireworks infractions between June 30 and July 10. None! That tells me that all our local police forces either don't investigate fireworks infractions, or, if they do, they put it down to "just a few folks having fun" and maybe confiscate the remaining fireworks (since they are not evidence, I have to wonder where they end up).
Never miss a local story.
How long do we have to wait until a child is injured or killed by some "folks just having fun?"