PORTLAND, Tenn. (WKRN) – Due to the ongoing dry conditions in the area, Portland Fire Chief Sam Thornton says the discharge of fireworks within the city limits is now prohibited until further notice.
Thornton announced the prohibition coincides with the city’s ongoing burn ban, which went into effect last Wednesday, June 22. Portland is one of a dozen communities across Middle Tennessee prohibiting open burning due to dry conditions following a large heat wave.
While most of those bans do not also encompass fireworks usage, Portland’s now does.
“After much consideration and discussion with my staff, I have decided to prohibit the discharging of fireworks inside the City of Portland until further notice,” Thornton said in his announcement. “This will coincide with the current open burn ban.
“We assess multiple resources daily to monitor the fire risk in our area. Portland did not get the rainfall this past weekend that was forecasted. Our area has been unusually dry for this time of year. The Nashville region has only received 0.88 inches of rainfall for the month of June, well below the normal average. By comparison, June 2021 Middle TN received 2.21 inches of precipitation.
“With the dry conditions, lower humidity, and expected wind conditions, our area is currently at a high risk for fire danger. We will continue to monitor and access the risk. There is a slight rain chance for our area this coming weekend. Please, continue to follow our social media posts for any updates.”
Other communities in Middle Tennessee are also considering prohibiting fireworks until conditions improve. The Mt. Juliet Fire Department announced Monday that if weather conditions did not improve, it might have to add fireworks to its ongoing burn ban.
“This burn ban does not presently include fireworks; however, if these conditions are not improved with some significant, measurable precipitation; City Officials will need to consider extending the ban to fireworks and firework shows,” Fire Chief Jamie Luffman said.
Including fireworks in its ban was “very much a last resort consideration,” however.