EL PASO, Texas - It's that time of year again, and people are going to celebrate Independence Day by shooting off fireworks.
However, this year's restrictions are stricter than last year's due to continuing extreme drought in the Southwest, which has made conditions in the borderland exceptionally dry. This makes the possibility for fires started from fireworks extremely more likely. These tougher restrictions are going to make it harder to buy fireworks. So, where can people purchase? Where can they use them safely?
In El Paso County, officials have decided to ban the use and purchase of fireworks in most incorporated areas of the county. This includes all of El Paso city limits, Horizon City, Clint, Socorro, Vinton, and Ysleta Del Sur Pueblo. Anthony, TX and San Elizario are immune from these restrictions and fireworks can be purchased there. In Anthony, fireworks can only be set off on July 4th, and only between 9 and 10 pm.
In New Mexico, Doña Ana County's restrictions are less strict. Fireworks can be purchased and set off within the county, including all of Las Cruces city limits, but there are guidelines set in place for where they can be used. They must be set off on paved or barren ground, as well as near areas that have an available water source.
Aerial fireworks are banned in both counties.