With the July 4 approaching, fireworks restrictions are different depending on the area.
Municipalities and counties in the Tricounty area are either following the lead of the state Fire Marshal or imposing no restrictions; the Forest Service, State Forestry, and Bernalillo County are restricting fireworks.
Wendy Mason, Wildfire Prevention and Communications Coordinator for the State Forestry Division said, “Under the New Mexico Forestry Division fire restrictions order, all fireworks are banned on all non-municipal, non-federal, and non-tribal lands.”
The New Mexico Fire Marshal’s Handbook is online at nmprc.state.nm.us, following the State Fire Marshal link. Fireworks are section 4-7.
In Bernalillo County, fireworks are restricted in the unincorporated areas of the county, outside the city limits of Albuquerque, according to a press release on the Bernalillo County website.
The unincorporated lands include all of the East Mountains, north, south and east to the county line, according to the press release.
The restrictions also limit the use of ground and hand-held sparkling and smoke-device-type fireworks, and there should be a readily available source of water to put out the fireworks.
The use and sale of aerial fireworks in the unincorporated area of Bernalillo County are also banned, according to the press release.
Restrictions limit the use of allowable fireworks to areas that are paved or barren. Restrictions are in place for 30 days, through July 9.
Torrance County Fire Chief Lester Gary said the county does not have any fireworks restrictions in place.
“Other than in our burn ordinance, [but] it just states that we follow the state fire marshal’s burn restrictions,” he said.
Santa Fe County
Santa Fe County spokesperson Carmelina Hart also said the county is not issuing any restrictions. “We will continue to enforce the [state] laws that are in place on legal and illegal fireworks. But no new restrictions are being issued,” she said.
Both Arlene Perea and Crystal Powell from the Sandia Ranger District and the Mountainair Ranger District of the Forest Service, respectively, said use of fireworks are always prohibited on national forests.
Edgewood’s Clerk-Treasurer Juan Torres said the town passed no restrictions to fireworks and whatever is allowed by law within the state and Santa Fe County will also be allowed in Edgewood.
“The state Fire Marshal already has a burn ban in effect,” said Edgewood’s mayor John Bassett June 24, adding that he expects a lot of “boomin’ and bangin’” on July 4.
Tijeras passed a resolution “to ban the use of all fireworks with the boundaries of the municipality that are ground audible devices, including chasers and fire crackers, or aerial devices, including but not limited to aerial shell kit-reloadable tubes, aerial spinners, helicopters, mines, missile-type rockets, multiple tube devices, roman candles, shells and stick-type rockets and is authorized to ban the use of all fireworks in wildlands and open space areas,” according to resolution 2020-17.
The village council also limited the use of any permissible fireworks to areas that are paved and barren or that have readily available sources of water for the homeowners or the general public.
Moriarty Fire Chief Todd Hart said the city is “allowing all permissible fireworks to be shot off per state ordinance. We are requesting that they have a water source, and to shoot them off in clear, barren ground, and not in roadways.”
He also said both Crossley Park and Moriarty City Park will be restricted from firework use.
Estancia’s Clerk-Treasurer Michelle Jones said that as of right now, Estancia does not have any fireworks bans.
In other fire news, Perea said it was a quiet week in the Mountainair Ranger District and that they haven’t had any abandoned campfires. Stage 2 fire restrictions are still in effect and fire danger is still very high.
Powell said that not much has changed for the Sandia Ranger District either, but the rain the state has received recently is beneficial.
“Conditions are still dry,” Powell said. “Conditions were trending towards very high and extreme fire danger rating, which is normal for this time of year, pre-monsoon. However, the precipitation has helped retain some fuel moisture and maintaining conditions at a high fire danger. Conditions are dry and there is still potential for larger fire activity.”
Stage 2 fire restrictions are also still in effect.