Sonoma County residents divided over 'safe and sane' fireworks

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Who would expect an argument about July 4th fireworks? In fire-scarred Sonoma County, they have seen this coming. (KGO-TV)

Who would expect an argument about July 4th fireworks? In fire-scarred Sonoma County, they have seen this coming.

Four cities -- Petaluma, Rohnert Park, Sebastopol and Cloverdale -- still allow the sale of "safe and sane" fireworks. Now they have become controversial, as well.

"We do good work," said Robin Merrill of the Elim Lutheran Church.

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They have sold fireworks in Petaluma for seven years and raised tens of thousands of dollars for disaster relief across the nation.

"I'm conflicted," added Judy Peterson. "But I have a thing about honoring commitments."

Merrill adds, "We expect some push-back. But we hand out pamphlets and warn every person to set these off in safe places."

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That attitude hardly silences critics of the practice.

"Safe and sane fireworks can still start fires," said Santa Rosa Assistant Fire Marshall Paul Lowenthal. "They pose a significant threat to our city."

Related Topics:
societyfireworksjuly 4th4th of july4th of july eventSonomaPetalumaRohnert ParkSebastopolCloverdale
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