In Indiana through July 9th, people can shoot off fireworks as long as they obey by local ordinances and stop at the designated times. However not everyone can tell the difference between fireworks and gunfire and that’s causing an issue for 911 call centers.
“911 do you have an emergency? Yeah setting off fireworks,” a caller says.
These type of calls are typical for dispatch centers around the fourth of July.
“Often times that is tying up 911 lines somebody that has emergency needs. If it is simply a noise complaint and its within the legal hours to shoot fireworks, often times its better just to ask your neighbor if they could stop if its causing a problem,” says Warrick County Sheriff Office Chief Deputy Paul Kruse.
Officials at 911 dispatch center throughout the Tri-State say they have received hundreds of fireworks complaints. Tonight a stern warning from police reminding people that 911 should only be used for emergencies.
“Since it’s not an ordinance, or a state statute they cant enforce that so its probably you are going to have to report it to your property manager, but i’ll send them over there,” says a Warrick County Dispatcher.
Fire departments and insurance agents are reminding people to be smart when they set off their fireworks.
“If someone is acting reckless with your fireworks or shooting them at someone or if there is a threat of somebody getting hurt or property being damaged from it then that is more appropriate,” says Deputy Kruse.
One thing that can reduce the likelihood of a fire is to remove grass clippings from around your home and debris in your gutters.
“Firecrackers go off and land on your roof or you know you are in the house getting ready to go outside and someone shoots the fireworks and something goes wrong, thats typically going to be covered,” says Johanna Greenwell of American Family Insurance.
But a warning for anyone using illegal fireworks, claims could be denied.
“Accidental is typically always going to be covered under your homeowners but if it is an intentional act its illegal fireworks or its not valid in your state for you to be able to shoot those off, those typically are not going to be covered by your homeowners insurance,” says Greenwell.