Omaha Police enforce non-emergency number for mass fireworks complaint calls

Published: Jul. 2, 2020 at 3:33 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Today is the first day that Omaha residents can legally shoot off fireworks. But most of us have heard fireworks going off in our neighborhoods for weeks. There have been hundreds of complaints and criticism of the police department for not enforcing the city ordinance.

Omaha police are increasing their efforts to answer fireworks complaints as we move closer to the fourth of July.

Fireworks were popping off in neighborhoods across the city for at least a month.

According to Omaha police, there were 1,044 fireworks complaint calls to 911 in the month of June. That’s compared to 644 last year.

In June police issued five citations for fireworks complaints. Last year in the month of June, six citations were handed out.

“We just started our special enforcement operations on Sunday the 28th just the last four days have we really focused on criminal sanctions for some of those violations,” said Scott Gray with OPD. “We have a team of officers assigned in each precinct every night that will do nothing but look for firearms excuse me fireworks violations.”

Police also prefer if you do have a fireworks complaint, .it would be helpful to law enforcement to use the non-emergency number.

“If they’re seeing something life-threatening maybe some small children playing with fireworks or some other dangerous activity, things that might cause a fire they should call 911 but for the average, they’re just hearing fireworks in their neighborhood or that kind of thing we would prefer they use the non-emergency number,” said Gray.

Omaha police say they will enforce the city’s fireworks ordinance, it is a misdemeanor offense, but by calling the non-emergency number for fireworks complaints, it frees up the 911 center and police for higher priority calls.

That phone number for non-emergency fireworks complaints is 402-444- 5802.

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