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City of Reno offices closed on Fourth of July

With Fourth of July approaching, Reno Fire Department stresses community safety

Post Date:07/01/2014 9:54 AM
Reno City Hall will be closed on Friday, July 4, 2014 in observance of Independence Day.

The Reno Fire Department would like to remind the community that fireworks pose a significant risk to lives and property and are illegal to possess or use within the City of Reno.

Possession or use of fireworks is a misdemeanor, which requires a mandatory court appearance, and can result in fines of up to $1,000 and/or imprisonment of up to six months. An even higher price may be paid by offenders, who can be held responsible for the cost of extinguishing the fire and any damage to homes, structures, or injuries to citizens. Since 2010, the Reno Police Department has issued citations to or arrested 32 people in the Reno area for fireworks-related offenses.
Fireworks can result in severe burns, fractures, scars, disfigurement, or even death. Even sparklers, which many people think of as harmless, reach temperatures of 1,000 to 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit. Bottle rockets, which are aerial rockets mounted on sticks, are typically placed in a soda bottle or a can for ignition. They tend to fly erratically, often striking innocent bystanders, and can prematurely explode, injuring or killing both those using them and those struck by them. Bottle rockets also land on rooftops or near homes, and they retain enough heat to cause both structure and wildland fires.
Because of the danger fireworks pose to life and property, combined with the region's extreme wildfire danger, any use of fireworks should be reported immediately by calling 9-1-1. Anyone wishing to dispose of fireworks can contact the Reno Fire Department's Division of Fire Prevention at 334-2300. Fire Prevention will pick up the fireworks, or residents can drop them off at any local fire station. The City’s Fireworks Amnesty Program protects those who voluntarily surrender their illegal fireworks from prosecution.
Whether you decide to stay close to home or enjoy the great outdoors this holiday weekend, the Reno Fire Department offers the following grilling and campfire safety tips:

Grilling Safety
  • Maintain a three-foot radius clearance around your grill. Designate this as a no-play zone for children and pets.
  • Before grilling, position your grill away from the house, deck railing, overhanging eaves, or tree branches. The Reno Fire Department recommends 10 feet of clearance from combustible construction.
  • Do not wear loose-fitting clothing while grilling.
  • Always use long-handled grilling tools so your hands stay far away from the flame.
  • When using charcoal grills, never add lighter fluid to hot coals and properly dispose of hot coals by dousing them in water. Always use a metal container to dispose of coals or ashes.
  • When using propane grills always check the connection between the propane tank and the fuel line. If you smell gas or suspect a leak do not use the grill and have it serviced by a professional. If you smell gas while cooking, move away from the grill immediately and call the fire department.
  • Never leave a lit grill unattended.
Campfire Safety
  • Make sure campfires are legal in the area that you are visiting.
  • Never build a campfire on a windy day. Sparks or embers from the fire could travel a long distance and set an unintentional fire.
  • Build campfires where they will not spread; well away from tents, trailers, dry grass, leaves, overhanging tree branches, or any other combustible. Maintain at least a 10- foot clearance area around the campfire.
  • Build campfires in fire pits provided, or on bare rock or sand if no pit is provided.
  • Never use gasoline as an aid to start a campfire.
  • Secure all lighters and matches and keep them out of children’s reach.
  • Keep campfires to a small, manageable size no more than 2 feet high by 3 feet in diameter.
  • Burn only clean firewood. Trash and chemically treated wood not only can smell bad, but may also produce excessive sparks or embers.
  • Never leave campfires unattended. Ensure that a responsible adult is monitoring the campfire at all times. Supervise children around campfires and never allow horseplay near the campfire.
  • Loose clothing can easily catch fire. Never reach into a campfire to rearrange pieces of wood.
  • Keep plenty of water and a shovel in close proximity to douse the fire when you’re done. Use caution when applying water to the campfire. Once the water has been applied, stir the dampened coals and douse it again with water.
For more information, contact the Reno Fire Department at 334-2300.
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