Law enforcement announce warnings and tips ahead of holiday

Law enforcement announce warnings and tips ahead of holiday

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WALB) - Even though the Fourth of July is Saturday, law enforcement in Thomas County has been getting complaints about fireworks for weeks.

Due to COVID-19 precautions, Thomasville is no longer having a Fourth of July celebration.

Law enforcement said it could be from people not having much to do because of the virus so this led some to set off fireworks long before the holiday.

“It’s been going on for several weeks already, and I think that it’s probably going to continue even beyond the 4th of July,” said Corporal Crystal Parker with the Thomasville Police Department.

She said they anticipate multiple cookouts and family gatherings this 4th of July.

So, they want to remind everyone of the importance of being respectful to your neighbors and making them aware of your plans.

Corporal Crystal Parker, PIO Thomasville Police Dept.
Corporal Crystal Parker, PIO Thomasville Police Dept. (Source: WALB)

“If you guys can talk about it and say ‘hey, you know tonight around 8 p.m., we’re going to set off some fireworks, just want to let you know that’s going to happen.’ That at least gives people an opportunity if they need to secure their dog inside or something, they can do that,” explained Corporal Parker.

Corporal Parker said police see an up-tick in lost animals each year after this holiday because they run away from the loud noises, so it’s best to take your dog inside if you know they may be afraid of fireworks.

“Being respectful and mindful of our neighbors, and especially our veterans in the community who might have post-traumatic stress disorder. Loud noises flashing lights, things like that can be a trigger,” said Corporal Parker.

Law Enforcement Announce Warnings and Tips Ahead of Holiday Thomasville
Law Enforcement Announce Warnings and Tips Ahead of Holiday Thomasville (Source: WALB)

Captain Steve Jones with the sheriff ‘s office said it’s also important to be mindful of the buildings around you.

”Nursing homes, hospitals, gas stations, even jails are prohibited within 100 yards...let’s be mindful of where these are and where you are in relationship to them.”

It's illegal in Georgia to shoot fireworks under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Captain Jones said some people also like to celebrate with their firearms on holidays.

Captain Steve Jones, PIO Thomas Co. Sheriff's Office
Captain Steve Jones, PIO Thomas Co. Sheriff's Office (Source: WALB)

“People shooting off fireworks at midnight and also shooting guns at midnight, that’s the scary thing because what goes up from a gun will come down somewhere. Plus, it’s just so dangerous. Just don’t...please don’t,” said Captain Jones.

Police will have extra officers working on the 3rd and 4th.

On those days, hours to shoot fireworks will be from 10 a.m. until 11:59 p.m.

Any other day, you can’t shoot them after 9 p.m.

If you do break these rules, you can be issued a citation.

Copyright 2020 WALB. All rights reserved.