WILKES-BARRE, Pa. -- This will be the first Fourth of July that Pennsylvanians can buy and use aerial fireworks similar to the ones you see at carnivals and that has some fire officials concerned.
Firefighters say these aerial fireworks can be dangerous, especially where there are buildings close together.
Sales at stores such as Keystone Firework have been explosive.
"Business has actually been booming in the last couple of weeks, you know? We have a lot of people that have been stopping in," said manager Jessica Maneval.
You can only legally buy aerial fireworks at brick and mortar stores and not firework tents. At Keystone Firework, they've sold 400 aerial fireworks in the last three days.
Independence Day is always one of the busiest days of the year for firefighters at the Wilkes-Barre Fire Department. Chief Jay Delaney is very worried about what this Fourth of July will look like because people can now buy aerial fireworks.
"Firefighters, paramedics, and EMS personnel have to respond to the injuries sustained with the fireworks. We see them every year. It's not if but when we're going to see them," the chief said.
On the Fourth of July four years ago, firefighters really saw what damage fireworks can do when a house on Horton Street in Wilkes-Barre when up in flames.
"Due to a firework that landed in a rain gutter that had dried leaves and started the house on fire. We're just opposed to the expansion but it happened and now we have to deal with it responsibly," Chief Delaney said.
In order to legally set off aerial fireworks, you need permission from the property owner and you have to be 150 feet away from an occupied structure when setting off an aerial firework, which firefighters say means there aren't many places in Wilkes-Barre for people to use them.