Setting off fireworks? Don’t try it in Auburn

Violators will pay for any fire damages, could be fined or cited
By: Jenifer Gee Journal Staff Writer
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Setting off your own fireworks this Fourth of July is a bad move in Auburn. Except for the annual fireworks show at the Gold Country Fairgrounds, local fire officials don’t want to see any other pyrotechnic displays brighten the heavily wooded foothill skyline. “Because of the hot dry weather we have, all of the fuels are dried out,” said Cal Fire Capt. Bill McKenzie. “One little accident could cause a catastrophic wildfire.” Auburn Fire Chief Mark D’Ambrogi said typically every year during this time, emergency crews are called to extinguish a handful of fires started by fireworks. Fortunately, he said, the incidents are usually caught in time before any major damage is done. “The big thing is that people who do use fireworks and cause a fire will be totally responsible for all costs associated with it,” D’Ambrogi said. Even if you don’t ignite a fire, if you are caught with fireworks, you are liable for a fine, citation or both, D’Ambrogi added. D’Ambrogi cautioned that celebrants should be aware of where they can and cannot set off fireworks. While some Placer County cities, including Roseville, Rocklin and Folsom, sell fireworks, those items cannot be brought into Auburn or any unincorporated area of Placer County. “Where there’s a fireworks stand, obviously they’re allowed in that jurisdiction,” D’Ambrogi said. “But you cannot take it from one jurisdiction to another — chances are it’s not allowed.” Extra eyes on the roads While fire crews will keep their eyes on the skies, California Highway Patrol will release extra patrol cars to man the roadways on one of the year’s busiest weekends. Between 6 a.m. July 3 and midnight July 5, all available CHP officers will be on patrol as part of the agency’s Fourth of July maximum enforcement period. Last year, Fourth of July weekend 41 fatalities occurred statewide in the highway patrol’s jurisdiction. Also, 1,684 people were arrested for driving under the influence. “July Fourth weekend is one of the most celebrated weekends of the year and can be a safe and fun one for everyone, “ said Capt. Rick Ward, Commander of the Auburn CHP Area, in a news release. “Remember to be safe in your travels throughout the weekend and plan ahead to get you and your family home safe.” Auburn Police Department officers as well as volunteers will be out on the streets during the city’s annual parade down Lincoln Way and onto High Street. They will also have a presence at festivities at the Gold Country Fairgrounds in Auburn. He said police will be watching for traffic violations and to confiscate any fireworks. “We want everybody to be able to enjoy the Fourth of July,” said Auburn Police Capt. John Ruffcorn. The Journal’s Jenifer Gee can be reached at or post a comment. ---------- Where can you watch fireworks? What: Auburn Family Fourth celebration When: Fireworks show to start at 9:40 p.m. Where: Gold Country Fairgrounds on High Street in Downtown Auburn Other festivities: Auburn’s July Fourth celebration begins at 7 a.m. with the Firemen’s Pancake breakfast, continues with a parade, and later kids’ activities and live music at the fairgrounds Call: the Auburn Chamber of Commerce at (530) 885-5616 or visit for more information. ---------- Colfax celebrates the Fourth What: Colfax’s July 3 Independence Day celebration When: Begins 11 a.m. July 3; Fireworks start around 9:15 p.m. Where: Festivities surround Downtown Colfax Visit: for more information ---------- Below are safety tips for using fireworks in jurisdictions where they are allowed. Those jurisdictions include Roseville, Rocklin and Folsom. Buy only State Fire Marshal-approved (Safe and Sane) fireworks. They must have the State Fire Marshal’s seal on them and can only be purchased at licensed fireworks stands. - Always read directions - Always have an adult present - Use fireworks outdoors only - Never use near dry grass or other flammable materials - Light one at a time - Use common sense and keep a safe distance - Never point or throw fireworks at another person - Never experiment with fireworks - Have a bucket of water and a hose handy - Never attempt to re-light or “fix” fireworks - Do not wear loose-fitting clothing - Never carry fireworks in your pockets - Parents are liable for any damage or injuries caused by their children using fireworks Source: California State Fire Marshal. Visit for more information or call (916) 327-8278. ---------- Fireworks free zones Want to set off fireworks? Make sure you’re not in these areas where fireworks are prohibited. Those with fireworks in these areas are subject to a fine and/or citation. If a fire starts as a result of your fireworks, you are liable for all costs associated with the incident. - Auburn - Loomis - Colfax - Penryn - Ophir - Newcastle - El Dorado Hills - Granite Bay ----------