Cleveland Police Blow Up Illegal Fireworks

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CLEVELAND -- Cleveland police officers blew up a third of the $100 thousand worth of illegal fireworks Friday that they confiscated from a garage at a home near West 130th Street.

The Cleveland Police Bomb Squad and the Cleveland Fire Department set them off at a training facility.

"What we do is we dig a trench, we put them in a trench and put some diesel fuel on them to make sure the wicks aren't going to be reactivated, then we explode them," Larry Gray, with the Cleveland Fire Department, said.

No one has been arrested in the case.

Ohio law allows people age 18 or older to buy so-called consumer fireworks such as firecrackers and roman candles, but they can't set them off in Ohio.

The large display fireworks are illegal to have or sell.

So-called novelty fireworks such as sparklers and smoke bombs are legal, except where banned by local communities.

"When you are dealing with dry weather, you can shoot a roman candle out and hit this grass and then we got a grass fire," Gray said.

This year, there is a special fire danger because of our dry weather.

Grass has turned brown, yellow and dried up in many places, and it would burn just like paper.

Even the leaves on many trees are dry and would make fast fuel for a fire.

"Keep them in the hands of a fireworks expert, somebody that's licensed to do it, and go enjoy it at a park versus you try to do it in your neighborhood," Gray said.

He urges people to call their local police departments if they suspect people are setting off illegal fireworks.

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