Illegal Fireworks

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Many of you are buying fireworks for the big Fourth Of July holiday. But before you shoot them off make sure they're legal, or you could be stuck paying a fine or be sent to jail.

Investigators take illegal fireworks very seriously. They've seen fireworks destroy buildings, homes and lives.

A few days ago, fireworks caused a fire at the Salvation Army Thrift Store in downtown Wichita.

Fire investigators say bottle rockets hit the roof of the building. The fire ended up causing $200,000 in damage. The thrift store is considered a total loss.

Last year, there were more than two dozen fireworks-related fires in Wichita. Wichita Fire Marshal Ed Bricknell says, "Fireworks are a fire hazard no matter the size. Bringing illegal fireworks into the city is a crime."

The only items allowed in Wichita are items such as smoke devices, novelty items and trick noisemakers.

You should always check city codes in your area before shooting fireworks. Sky rockets, bottle rockets and moon rockets are illegal in the state of Kansas.

Firefighters won't wait for calls to come in. They will be out patrolling neighborhoods, checking for illegal fireworks.

Bricknell says, "Firefighters are just as patriotic as anybody else and we want be to have fun, but we want it to be a safe 4th of July weekend."

Fire officials say the best advice is always to shoot fireworks where you buy them. If you still have questions about the fireworks that are legal in your area, call your local fire department.

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