Letter to the Editor: Fireworks in Downey

Dear Editor: 

I would like to share my family's concerns and horror with the fireworks situation, both illegal and safe and sane, and how the situation has escalated to unbearable levels in the City of Downey.

The use of fireworks, for many years, used to be primarily the safe and sane type which our children enjoyed immensely. Occasionally, we would hear a cherry bomb or a string of firecrackers.

Now, in my neighborhood and all over the city, safe and sane are vastly outnumbered by all the illegal incendiary devices. Mortars seem to be the bombardment of choice now, setting off cars alarms, terrorizing our poor pets. and exposing our homes to fire. Bottle rockets are a close second choice.

The use of these illegal fireworks begins weeks before the 4th of July, intensifying to the sound of artillery in a war zone on the 4th, and continuing to a lesser degree for weeks afterward. 

Our poor dog, a rescue, has not gone on his daily walk for weeks because of the booms and the bangs. He spends most of his time shaking and cowering in the bathtub or shower stall. On the 4th, the illegal explosives began in heavy use by 5 p.m. (still daylight).

It was so bad that my husband loaded the dog into the car and left Downey, going to our daughter's home in Long Beach, where all fireworks are considered illegal. It was a quiet and peaceful break for human and canine, until they returned to Downey at 11:30 p.m. People were still setting off mortars and rockets!

I am therefore requesting that the citizens of Downey, once again, consider another vote regarding outlawing all fireworks in our city. I would like our Cit Council members and our city manager to stand up, like the City of Long Beach (which is much larger than Downey) and other cities have done, and say "No more." 

I know that there are a number of groups in Downey who agitate for keeping Downey lit up like a combat zone because it is fiscally advantageous for them, but the situation has gotten way out of hand. Police and fire can't possibly enforce our fireworks ordinances with both kinds of fireworks blowing up all over the city. There are other ways to raise money besides selling explosives. I can't imagine that the same groups who sell the safe and sane fireworks are not equally appalled at the situation we find ourselves.

For the safety and well being of Downey humans and pets, please, let's stop the insanity. Consider taking a minute to call your council person (904-7274), our city manager or the Fire Prevention Bureau (904-7345) to register your concerns. 

Paula Mayfield

Dear Editor:
Every year it’s the same thing, same people and nothing gets done about it. 

Fireworks all over Downey -- they should outlaw them. They are illegal fireworks and yet we still sell them. I feel sorry for all the pets that are roaming around going crazy.
Do something about the fireworks, don’t just say you will.

Irene Trevino

Dear Editor: 

Another 4th of July, and thank God we are still living in the land of the free.

Again we will hear about the concern of the pet owners due to the noise of “illegal” fireworks. I wrote on this issue along with the problems of fellow veterans last year.

The complaint is always about the noise of” illegal” fireworks. Well, can someone answer this for me? What is the difference between the noise of” illegal” fireworks and the noise of “legal “fireworks”?

I speak of the displays that are conducted  at city parks, high schools, the Rose Bowl, and any and all cities that charge admission for these shows?

What about the pets and any other human issues in those local areas? Are the pets and public not affected because the fireworks are “legal”?

Vincent Diaz