There were 240 fires caused by Fourth of July fireworks in King County last year, despite the fact that fireworks are largely banned throughout the area, according to the state fire marshal.
The vast majority of the fires — approximately 80 percent — occurred in wildlands or areas with a lot of vegetation and caused thousands of dollars of damage. A person found responsible for starting these types of fires can be required to pay restitution and damages, the fire marshal warned.
Summer weather conditions can make vegetation extremely dry and susceptible to fire, they added. While discharging fireworks, a small fire can easily get out of control if the fuels (grass and other vegetation) are present.
Fireworks are banned in Bellevue, Beaux Arts Village, Clyde Hill and Medina and restricted on Mercer Island. The Bellevue area’s ban has been in effect since 1994 and has significantly reduced the number of fires and injuries common with private fireworks use, according to the Bellevue Police.