Barrington police: Keep fireworks off town beach

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The Barrington Police Department is again reminding people to refrain from lighting off any fireworks at the town beach this Independence Day.

Barrington Police Chief John LaCross said people are welcome to light off legal fireworks on their own property, but should not be planning any pyrotechnics displays at the town beach.

"Fireworks at the beach are illegal without a permit," Chief LaCross said.

In prior years, residents and non-residents would stop by the town beach and light off fireworks, capping backyard barbecues and Independence Day celebrations. Some residents had even started to hold impressive displays of fireworks that drew crowds to the beach. But about two years ago, town officials put an end to that. They said the private fireworks displays were illegal and dangerous. Officials also said people often left a mess at the beach.

"Three years ago someone got hit in the neck with a bottle rocket," said the chief.

Officials said residents are welcome to light off legal fireworks on their own property, but urged that people use caution when handling them.

"As long as you're on your property, you can discharge them," Chief LaCross said.

The chief released a statement on Monday morning regarding the issue:

"The fourth of July time has been very popular for people to gather to set off fireworks at our Barrington Town Beach. The Barrington Recreation Department and the Department of Public Works have been working very hard to maintain a clean and inviting beach for our residents to enjoy. Often times families will gather at the beach to watch fireworks around the neighboring shorelines. In recent years, it has come to our attention that there has been private fireworks discharged on our town beach, which leave a mess and has not been sanctioned or approved by the Town.

"The Barrington Police Department will have additional patrols on during the Fourth of July & weekend and will discourage the discharge of illegal and private fireworks displays on our town beach and other parts of town as this activity can be dangerous and poses a great liability to the town if not properly permitted and supervised.

"Thank you for your understanding. We hope you will have a safe and happy Fourth."

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