San Angelo, Texas — San Angelo Police Department is urging everyone taking part in Independence Day festivities to be as safe as possible. SAPD offers advice for being safe and things to keep in mind this holiday weekend.
Fourth of July weekend is a time to celebrate America’s birthday, but with more people out and about for the holiday, the San Angelo Police Department says holiday weekends put a strain on the department.
“It never fails, our officers and dispatchers are always overwhelmed with calls in regard to fireworks,” Officer Tina Burks the Public Information Officer with the San Angelo Police Department said.
The heap of calls typically centers around fireworks sounding like nearby gunfire and the pyrotechnics are not legal in the city limits.
“It is illegal to possess and discharge fireworks inside, and within 5000 feet of the city limits of San Angelo, you can be issued a citation and the fine amount can be up to $2,000, and also understand that police can and will confiscate your fireworks,” Officer Burks said.
Officer Tina Burks asks that if you still want to see fireworks to attend local events because they’re still fun and safer to enjoy.
“You never know how fireworks can explode, I’ve seen it happen firsthand so just be very careful outside of the city limits of course, be mindful of your neighbors and also pets because pets are going to get spooked, they’re going to run off, please do not discharge any fireworks within the city limits,” Officer Burks said.
With more activity around the city Officer Burks says there will be an increased law enforcement presence to match that, especially on the roads.
“We do see a higher increase of DWI risks on holiday weekends especially Fourth of July,” Officer Burks said. ‘So just please be careful. We do have a lot of accidents; we don’t want anybody to get hurt or killed.”
Even with more officers on duty the San Angelo Police Department says holiday weekends require a little patience from everyone.
“We will respond to those calls,” Officer Burks said. ‘Sometimes it just takes us a little bit because we have emergency calls respond to as well.’