Pittsburgh’s Fireworks Process Drive makes use of ShotSpotter to crack down on unlawful fireworks – CBS Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The City of Pittsburgh’s Fireworks Task Force is back this year to fight fireworks.

The eight-person task force consists of police officers and firefighters.

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If you decide to have the July 4th holidays with a bang, the task force will be on the lookout for dangerous and destructive fireworks every night through July 5th from 7pm to 2am.

“Our main concern is building fires from fireworks abuse and, most importantly, injuries,” said Wendell Hissrich, the city’s director of public safety.

Last year, a fire was lit by fireworks in the abandoned Horace Mann School. Last year there were seven building fires, several bush fires, reported injuries and several noise complaints in the city. The task force distributed 22 quotations.

This year the task force is using the ShotSpotter warning system to detect loud, illegal booms.

“You are able to remove filters. We can focus on areas where fireworks are fired frequently and the task force or the police will respond to this area, ”said Hissrich.

Fireworks are legal to purchase in Pennsylvania, but fireworks cannot be set off within 50 feet of a building, city park, ball court, or city property.

When task force members respond to complaints, they explain the laws and regulations. If they return to the same address, there may be a $ 100 seizure and seizure of the fireworks.

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“We don’t want to quote. We hope you will follow our advice. When we receive callbacks, they are quoted. Or if the result of the fireworks is a building fire, there will be a comprehensive investigation, ”said Hissrich.

Meanwhile, Phantom Fireworks in Monroeville is restocking shelves.

“Just try to get in here sooner rather than later because it’ll be a madhouse sooner than we think,” said Mike Marcis, co-manager at Phantom Fireworks.

Marcis said fewer products are coming in due to a possible shortage.

“I notice a flaw on our order page. I get everything we need for this store and am prepared as well as possible for the coming rush. We’re pretty full right now, but at the same time I know the rush will come later and it will be difficult to keep stocks, ”said Marcis.

Officials hope fireworks will be less used this year. They hope people choose public fireworks like the show scheduled for Point State Park to celebrate our independence.

“Fireworks are best left to the professionals,” says Hissrich.

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Hissrich said residents can report illegal fireworks use to the police, but it will only be a priority call if someone is using fireworks near a building or if someone under the age of 18 is using fireworks.

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