Marion Fire Chief asking city council to change how fireworks are sold there

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MARION, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- Marion Fire Chief Deb Krebill wants the city council to change the city’s policy for allowing fireworks sales. She wants it limited to industrial sites. That’s similar to what Cedar Rapids has.

She says Cedar Rapids changing their rules nearly tripled the number of vendors they had this year. In 2017 they only had 8. This year, they had 20. Fire Marshal Wade Markley is the only one tasked with checking on those shops. Krebill says he built up a lot of overtime doing that.

She says, "He had to go back to each vendor 3-5 times, just because of violations.” She says in total, this fireworks season was expensive for her administration.

She says, “To do all of those inspections, to do the tent permits, to do all of those things, it almost cost almost $6,000 for us in personnel time."

Krebill is also worried about where the fireworks are being sold at. She explains, "A lot of the places the tents were are large commercial lots where people are parking, people are walking. The Hy-Vee’s, the Walmart’s, the Menards. They're in high traffic areas. And those types of explosives in a high area can be a danger."

Marion's City Manager Lon Pluckhahn says the council will listen to the chief’s suggestion, look at the workload, and costs of enforcement, and take all of that into consideration.