LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - In Arkansas, 70 of its 75 counties are under a burn ban and sheriff's offices all over the state are prepared to enforce them.
The Fourth of July is the time of year when you celebrate our country with fun, food, and fireworks. But this year, fireworks are out of the questions.
In White County, the sheriff's office says they already plan to double their patrols in certain areas to make sure no one shoots fireworks. If you are caught, you will be issued a citation and fined $500.
"From the sheriff really on down to the reserve deputy there's going to be an additional 13 out on the streets throughout the day tomorrow and into the evening," says White County Deputy Chief, Jeremy Clark.
Clark says so far they have avoided major fires and they want to keep it that way. Faulkner County also plans to ramp up their patrols on the 4th as well.
"Patrol will be enforced probably double our regular shift is coming out plus we have reserves that will be out tonight, tomorrow night, and possibly the next night," says Clark.
Captain Matt Rice with Faulkner County says the sheriff's department has received 30 to 40 disturbance calls over the last week about fireworks. He says there won't be as much leniency with fireworks as in years past.
"You could be cited a citation if you're caught shooting fireworks and if it causes any damage. You know if it does light a field or a house or whatever it might be on fire you could be liable for that damage also," says Rice.
Most of the time shooting fireworks is at worst, a nuisance to your neighbor, but shooting fireworks this year can endanger your entire neighborhood.
"We're way beyond nuisance, its potential danger, its potential life-threatening, because of the conditions because of the elements," says Clark.
Clark says the White County Sheriff's department will coordinate with the fire department to be on standby throughout the holiday. Overall he hopes Arkansans will keep up the good work.
"I think people, on their own, are being very sensible and being cautious so we're just trying to encourage that and reinforce that and just be seen," says Clark.