While it may not have actually sounded like it, the 4th of July in Mountlake Terrace required minimal responses from the Fire, Police and various City departments.
Snohomish County Fire District 1 reported that, for the 3rd year in a row, they had no fireworks related calls in the City. Leslie Hynes from FD1 said that while they had no calls in MLT they did have one tree fire in Brier, two small grass fires in Edmonds and 19 calls in the unincorporated areas of Snohomish County that they serve. Hynes also said that FD1 Deputy Chief Steve Sherman was patrolling Mountlake Terrace on July 4 and said that the few people he encountered with fireworks were very cooperative when he informed them of the ban.
Mountlake Terrace City Manager John Caulfield reported Tuesday to the City Council that the police department responded to 33 fireworks related calls. Most resulted in verbal warnings and no citations were given out. A small number of fireworks were confiscated and a couple of mailboxes suffered damage from some sort of fireworks.
Caulfield also said that before the ban on personal fireworks was enacted it would take City Public Works and Parks staff several days, if not weeks, to clean up all of the fireworks related debris on City streets and in City parks. Since the ban was enacted, including this year, there has been very little cleanup necessary on streets, in parks and parking lots and a significant decline in restroom vandalism.
The city was well prepared and ready to respond should emergencies have arisen this past weekend. The good news is that the fireworks ban that was implemented 5 years ago now, beginning in 2007, has resulted in not only a much quieter and safer community compared to the previous years, prior to the ban, but also significantly reduced city costs and resources before, during and after the holiday.
City Manager John Caulfield
The ban on fireworks continues to be a sore subject with some Mountlake Terrace residents. One homeowner decided to make a statement with the sign reading “Communist China has fireworks. WTF MLT?” @Wygle sent us the photo below. When posted to the MLTnews Facebook Page the photo received dozens of comments both from supporters of the ban and those displeased with it.
Some have argued that the ban kills years of tradition and the ability to be patriotic, others argue for the ban because it is dangerous and a waste of taxpayers money to have to clean up after people who are irresponsible with fireworks.