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A safe and sane Fourth
July 02, 2012, 05:00 AM By Bill Silverfarb Daily Journal staff

Kore Chan/Daily Journal San Bruno Lions Club member Peter Carey helps customer David Desjardins with his fireworks purchase on the 600 block of El Camino Real over the weekend.

As in years past, police and fire officials in Pacifica and San Bruno are preparing for a safe and sane Fourth of July as they remind revelers that there is a zero tolerance policy for the use of illegal fireworks.

Seventeen booths in San Bruno and 15 in Pacifica are currently selling safe and sane fireworks as they are the only cities in the county that can legally sell them. They are also the only cities in the county that allow for the use of safe and sane fireworks.

For many local nonprofit and community organizations, the fireworks sales are the biggest fundraisers of the year.

The San Bruno Lions Club is selling out of a bigger booth on El Camino Real than in years past, said Charles "Smitty” Smith.

"It is one of our major fundraisers we do every year with 100 percent of the proceeds going back into our programs,” Smith said.

Business has been moderate so far, he said, but sales will "pick up like crazy” Tuesday and Wednesday, Smith said.

In San Bruno, safe and sane fireworks can only be discharged from noon until 10 p.m. then from noon until midnight on July 4.

The use of safe and sane fireworks in San Bruno is limited to private property and no safe and sane fireworks shall be discharged on public, semi-public or private open areas such as parking lots, vacant property, or in public streets or rights-of-way.

Children under 18 are also prohibited from setting off safe and sane fireworks.

In Pacifica, police remind residents that state beaches are also off limits to illegal fireworks and there are no fireworks of any type allowed at Sharp Park Beach. Legal fireworks must have the state fire marshal seal of approval.

Pacifica places an 11 p.m. curfew on the use of safe and sane fireworks and imposes a $1,000 administrative fine on individuals who use illegal fireworks.

The fine in San Bruno is also $1,000, police Cmdr. Noreen Hanlon said.

"The department will have all personnel, that are not on a pre-approved leave, working,” Hanlon wrote the Daily Journal in an email.  

"We’ve also secured additional personnel from allied agencies to supplement our officers in their enforcement efforts.”

The city’s enforcement campaign is already under way, she wrote.

"The San Bruno Police Department desires nothing more than those residing in or visiting our community to have a safe and enjoyable holiday,” Hanlon wrote.

Most safe and sane fireworks booths in San Bruno and Pacifica will stay open until 9 p.m. Wednesday.

Bill Silverfarb can be reached by email: or by phone: (650) 344-5200 ext. 106.

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