By Tim Leeds
Fireworks are still on for the Fourth of July celebration this year, at least for the moment, but Hill County commissioners are warning people to be cautious in their use.
"Care should be used," Commissioner Pat Conway said today. "Individuals are responsible for any fires that occur." Parents will be held responsible for fires started by minors in their care, he added.
"There should be proper fire protection if anything is going to be used," he said.
Havre Police Capt. Mike Barthel said city ordinances ban any use of fireworks inside the city limits. He said officers will respond to any complaints of use of fireworks.
"We had several last night," he said.
Barthel said police officers will most likely issue warnings the first time they respond to any offense, but repeat offenders may be ticketed and fireworks can be confiscated. Under the ordinances, citations may be issued and fireworks confiscated on the first offense.
Conway said the county commissioners want to remind people that a burning ban is in effect. No open fires are allowed, he said, and precautions should be used with any activity that could start a fire, including fireworks.
Conway said that if the commissioners banfireworks, the ban will be clearly and publicly announced.
The Havre Jaycees fireworks display is scheduled for July Fourth. The event will start about sundown at the Hill County Fairgrounds.
Conway said the display is still on, but it could be canceled depending on the condition of the environment. He said people need to remember how dry the area is.
"Some of that grass has dried green," he said. "It looks green, but it is dry."
He said trees in the county are in the same condition. Even if they look green, the moisture content is very low because of the drought.
Conway said fireworks are never allowed to be used in Beaver Creek Park.