Police in the city of Binghamton have been directed to crack down on the use of illegal fireworks during the Independence Day weekend.

Mayor Jared Kraham on Wednesday said the police department Community Response Team will be working to target those who insist on breaking the law as part of their Fourth of July celebrations.

Shortly after City Hall issued a news release reminding residents that fireworks are illegal in Binghamton, two people were observed lighting fireworks in front of a business on South Washington Street. They then ran off into the nearby Southside Commons Park.

Kraham said "setting off fireworks in neighborhoods, near wooded areas or anywhere with children or others nearby is dangerous and irresponsible."

In the news release, he said "illegal fireworks cause countless injuries and start destructive fires each year." He said the use of such fireworks also are "a drain on resources in times when our first responders are already busier than usual."

In July 2020, a Binghamton man was charged with felony arson in connection with a fire that heavily damaged a house on State Street.

Police said the blaze broke out because people had been setting off fireworks in front of the house. The house was demolished about two months later.

A State Street house damaged in a blaze sparked by fireworks was torn down on September 10, 2020. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)
A State Street house damaged in a blaze sparked by fireworks was torn down on September 10, 2020. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)
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Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: bob@wnbf.com. For breaking news and updates on developing stories, follow @BinghamtonNow on Twitter.