Loud situation: Village officials receive fireworks complaints

CRIDERSVILLE — A local village has been receiving complaints about a popular holiday tradition.

Fireworks have been set off in the village of Cridersville and the police chief and mayor said there is a state law by which residents need to abide.

“Anything that flies and goes ‘boom’ is illegal in the state of Ohio,” Cridersville Police Chief John Drake said during Monday’s regular council meeting. “It woke me up at 3:30 in the morning the other night, and I had three people call my house because of it.”

Drake said he is trying to be nice about the situation, and give first warnings, but after that, the fireworks could be taken away from residents who are setting them off.

“I understand it is the Fourth of July, but 3:30 a.m. is getting out of hand there,” Drake said.

Cridersville Mayor Lorali Myers agreed and said she also understands it is that time of year, and this is a way to celebrate, but she asks village residents to be mindful of their neighbors.

“With fireworks, we are concerned about a fire hazard in the community, especially as dry as it has been,” Myers said.

With little rain lately, grass is dry, and Myers and Drake want people to understand that there are dry yards in the village that pose a safety hazard when it comes to shooting off fireworks.

“I don’t want people to lose their property because of a little fun,” Myers said.

Dry land is especially susceptible to catch fire, Myers said, as she and Drake reminded residents that Ohio ordinance makes shooting fireworks illegal in the first place.

In other related business, Myers noted the open burn policy in the village.

“Even if it is a contained fire, if it smokes and the wind takes the smoke into the neighbors’ house, it is illegal,” Myers said.

Cridersville Fire Chief Ron Mertz said the open burn policy is illegal when it is within a one mile radius of the village limits.

“With the dry weather, it is certainly a concern,” Myers said.