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Some communities hope to silence fireworks (at least at night so people can sleep)

The Fourth of July holiday is fast approaching. 

Many Michigan cities and towns are looking for ways to quiet home-made fireworks shows.

Last year, a new state law opened the door to sales of bigger and louder fireworks in Michigan.   That led to some sleepless nights in many parts of Michigan last summer, as the whirl and bang of newly legal fireworks often sounded into the wee hours of the morning.

Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero says his police department will clamp down on late-night pyrotechnics.  He says people who set off fireworks between midnight and 8AM will get citations for noise violations.

“We’re asking people to please be respectful of their neighbors,” says Bernero, “No one enjoys hearing fireworks explode at 3am when they are trying to sleep.”

The capitol city’s police and fire departments had to deal with a sharp increase in fireworks complaints last summer.  

Mike Yankowski is Lansing’s interim police chief. He says there were so many complaints last year Lansing’s police department often didn’t have time to respond. 

Yankowski hopes people will restrict their use of fireworks to more appropriate times.

“We want people to enjoy fireworks,” says Yankowski, “But once that time has come and gone, it’s time to put the fireworks away.”

A new state law gives local governments more control of fireworks.   But few cities and towns have had time to alter their ordinances to take advantage of the new state law.

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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