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La Crosse Police using heat maps, past data to inform residents about illegal fireworks, where fine is $502




Areas of La Crosse that have been notorious for illegal fireworks in the past could be on the police’s radar this year.

“We have our crime analyst, who does an amazing job for us, and is able to run heat maps and look at different areas where maybe we had higher call volumes in the past for fireworks,” La Crosse Police Captain Avery Schott said. “Or, over time, (can) look at past years and be able to say, ‘This location, and this area, seems to be a heavily concentrated area for calls for service for fireworks around the Fourth of July.'”

The fine for illegal fireworks in the city was raised last year from $124 to $502.

Schott, on WIZM’s La Crosse Talk this week, added that La Crosse Police are trying to be proactive in reminding residents and visitors of the rules, and using past data to seek out trouble areas.

“This year we’re taking a little bit more of an awareness and education stance right away,” Avery said. “We’re also looking at calls for service in the past in various areas that maybe we had numerous firework complaints and we are getting out, boots on the ground, and making contact, pre fireworks being lit off, to have conversations with people about, we cannot have this continue.”

Schott also reminded listeners what is illegal and not to be confused if you find a place where you can buy these fireworks.

“Legal versus illegal fireworks in the city of La Crosse,” Schott said, “sometimes people think, ‘Well, we’ve got stands that are selling them.’ They are not possibly selling them in the city of La Crosse. But illegal would be like a roman candle, bottle rockets, mortars — anything that explodes or leaves the ground is a really good kind of rule of thumb to watch, unless you get a permit issued.”

That also goes for the entire state of Wisconsin, with local jurisdictions enforcing the rules.

The law states: “Possessing or using any other fireworks, including, for example, firecrackers, roman candles, bottle rockets and mortars, in Wisconsin without a valid permit is illegal.”

Host of WIZM's La Crosse Talk PM | University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point graduate | Hometown: Greenville, Wis | Avid noonball basketball player and sand volleyballer in La Crosse

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Brandon

    June 28, 2023 at 7:56 am

    If homeless people in the park were shooting off fireworks you’d probably just leave them alone though right? Fireworks $500/camping in our parks and urinating in our parking ramps $0

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