Fireworks banned in Mount Shasta: Hot temps, low moisture, Lava Fire contributed to decision

Skye Kinkade
Mount Shasta Herald

Mount Shasta city officials have decided to ban fireworks in 2021 – both personal "Safe and Sane" fireworks and the professional show planned at Shastice Park on Sunday, the Fourth of July.

The decision was made due to extremely high temperatures, historically low moisture levels, atmospheric conditions and the nearby Lava Fire, which has created a lack of available resources, said Mount Shasta Fire Department Chief Matt Melo on Monday morning.

"It's the responsible decision based on the current conditions," said Mount Shasta Fireworks pyrotechnician and firefighter Tom Haistings. "We always said the show is dependent on the weather."

Haistings said the fireworks committee didn't want to wait until the last minute to make a decision about the show. However, the "party in the park," starting at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, featuring live music, vendors, food and a beer garden is still a go, at least for now.

This is the first time that fireworks have been banned in the city as far as he can remember, Melo said. He's been a firefighter with the MSFD for 35 years. He stressed the decision was not made due to pressure from community members who are adamantly opposed to the firework display.

"This was based on facts and the conditions we are facing right now," he said, adding that any firework activity in the city will be prosecuted.

In addition, all open burning is banned inside city limits, Melo said. The only exception is barbecues.

Open burning includes campfires, cooking fires, ceremonial fires, warming fires, and fire pits. 

For more information, call the MSFD at 530-926-7546.

Skye Kinkade is the editor of the Mt. Shasta Area Newspapers and the Siskiyou Daily News. She is a fourth generation, lifelong Siskiyou County resident.