City of San Mateo Urges Restraint in 4th of July Festivities

Are you aware of the City's rules for Fourth of July celebrations, such as for fires and cookouts, setting off of fireworks and the like?

The City, Police and Fire departments, and the Parks and Recreation Department would like to wish all residents of San Mateo and their visitors a happy and festive Fourth of July - however, in a statement issued Thursday, the organizations urged everyone to exercise caution and common sense in celebrations this year.

Here are important rules and City-wide laws all residents and their visitors should be aware of this Fourth of July:

  • In the City of San Mateo all fireworks, including "safe and sane" fireworks, are illegal. It is illegal to possess, store, offer for sale, expose for sale, sell at retail, use, or explode any fireworks, including “safe and sane” fireworks as defined in the California State Health and Safety Laws. The intent of the law is to prevent injury, maintain order in our neighborhoods, and prevent fire or damage to structures and/or vegetation. This is a zero-tolerance issue.
  • Police officers, fire officials and Parks and Recreation staff will have patrols specifically dedicated to enforcing the fireworks safety laws and protecting the city, including our parks. Appropriate action will be taken when dealing with violators, including confiscation of all fireworks.
  • Traditionally, the Fourth of July holiday is celebrated as an outdoors event, and protection from the heat and sun is very important. Drink plenty of fluids, limit your time in direct sunlight, and apply adequate sun protection products.
  • When cooking outside, you should verify that your cooking equipment and propane tanks are in good working order. Check the tanks for gas leaks by using a soapy solution. We advise everyone to have a working fire extinguisher.
  • Make sure all ignition sources - such as cooking equipment, smoking materials, etc. - are under control and far enough away from combustibles, vegetation, etc. Small ignition sources can smolder for hours after being discarded, even though you might believe them to be extinguished. These smoldering items can ignite into an open flame.
  • The Parks and Recreation Department wants to remind everyone that the same laws apply to all City parks. Some City parks will additionally be patrolled by City of San Mateo Park Rangers. Parkside Aquatic Park will be closed from 6 p.m. until the following day. Seal Point Park will be closed immediately following the Foster City fireworks display. All City parks will be closed after 10 p.m.


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