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South Bend Fireworks Laws June 24, 2010

Posted by southbendpolice in Community Announcements, In The News, News Releases.
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This is the time of year the phones are lit up with calls asking about or complaining about fireworks use. Here are a couple of frequently asked questions, as well as the city ordinance regarding fireworks use within the city limits.

Q: When Can I Use Fireworks?

A: There are three general time periods fireworks use is allowed:

a. Between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. on June 29, 30, July 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9.
b. Between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 midnight on July 4; and
c. Between the hours of 10:00 a.m. on December 31 and 1:00 a.m. on January 1.

Q: What are the penalties for violations?
A: Penalties range based upon the number of events to a particular person or address, ranging from $100 through $500.00 per offense, and up to $2500.00 if fire related damage ensues from fireworks use.

Q: We are having a gathering in a city park. Can we shoot off some fireworks then?

A: No. All fireworks use is banned from all South Bend City Parks.

Q: How will police respond?
A: The 4th of July timeframe is generally the busiest time of the year for calls for all types of police service. As such calls are prioritized by call type. Noise complaints, especially for fireworks are considered low priority in dispatching. If an officer is sent to a specific address for a fireworks complaint the officer will generally, and at the officer’s discretion, give a verbal warning for a violation. The SBPD recognizes that fireworks are an inherent part of celebrations for this time of year, and we encourage responsible gathering and use. If a verbal warning is not heeded, then expect a fine to be cited to the reponsible party. This could include the person lighting, or the person/resident “in charge” of the location where the violation is taking place.

Q: I want to call to report this as a problem in my neighborhood.

A: Again, bear in mind the times and dates use is permitted. Also, due to police call volume, we request you first attempt to speak to your neighbors about the violations. Many loud party calls police are sent on, the loud party seemed unaware the neighbors were bothered by it. As a neighbor, please attempt to resolve on your own first without police being called.

If this does not work, then please report to our NON EMERGENCY number, at 235-9361. Fireworks calls are not worthy of 911 phone use, except in case of fire or medical emergency. Please try to be as specific as possible when reporting an address: “in front of 1110 South Michigan” rather than a general location “over by Sample and Michigan on the corner”. A contact numbr or your location is preferred as well so the officer may speak with you further about the concern.
Play it safe and enjoy the professional shows!

Q: What is considered “fireworks”?

A: See the ordinance below.

Q: What is the whole ordinance?
A: As follows:

Sec. 13-59. Fireworks regulation.(a) Consumer fireworks may be used within the corporate limits of the City of South Bend only under the provisions of this section.
(1) For purposes of this section, the term “consumer firework” means: a small firework that is designed primarily to produce visible effects by combustion, and that is required to comply with the construction, chemical composition, and labeling regulations promulgated by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission under 16 CFR 1507. The term also includes some small devices designed to produce an audible effect, such as whistling devices, ground devices containing fifty (50) milligrams or less of explosive composition, and aerial devices containing one hundred thirty (130) milligrams or less of explosive composition. Propelling or expelling charges consisting of a mixture of charcoal, sulfur, and potassium nitrate are not considered as designed to produce an audible effect.

Consumer fireworks include:
1. Aerial devices, which include sky rockets, missile type rockets, helicopter or aerial spinners, roman candles, mines, and shells;
2. Ground audible devices, which include firecrackers, salutes, and chasers; and
3. Firework devices containing combinations of the effects described in clauses 1. and 2.; and
b. Do not include the following items:
1. Dipped sticks or wire sparklers. However, total pyrotechnic composition may not exceed one hundred (100) grams per item. Devices containing chlorate or perchlorate salts may not exceed five (5) grams in total composition per item.
2. Cylindrical fountains.
3. Cone fountains.
4. Illuminating torches.
5. Wheels.
6. Ground spinners.
7. Flitter sparklers.
8. Snakes or glow worms.
9. Smoke devices.
10. Trick noisemakers, which include:
i. Party poppers.
ii. Booby traps.
iii. Snappers.
iv. Trick matches.
v. Cigarette loads
vi. Auto burglar alarms.

When Can I use Fireworks?

(2) No person may use, ignite or discharge consumer fireworks within the corporate limits of the City of South Bend except during the following times:
a. Between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. on June 29, 30, July 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9.
b. Between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 midnight on July 4; and
c. Between the hours of 10:00 a.m. on December 31 and 1:00 a.m. on January 1.

(3) No person may use, ignite, or discharge consumer fireworks on any public street or in any public park within the corporate limits of the City of South Bend at any time.

(4) Any person violating this subsection shall be subject to the following penalties:
a. One hundred dollars ($100.00) for a first offense;
b. Two hundred fifty dollars ($250.00) for a second;
c. Five hundred dollars ($500.00) for a third offense and every subsequent.
d. Any person issued a citation for violating any provision of section 13-59 shall make payment through the Ordinance Violations Bureau. Failure to make payment within thirty (30) days of the issuance of a citation for violation of any provision of section 13-59 shall result in the assessment of a late fee of fifty dollars ($50.00).

e. In such instances where using, igniting or discharging consumer fireworks results in a fire and damage is determined to be caused by negligence or the willful disregard or violation of any of the provisions of this article, a fine equal to the cost expended by the City to send fire suppression personnel and equipment to the location shall be assessed with said fine not exceeding two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500.00).

f. A citation for a violation of section 13-59 shall be issued to the responsible party. A responsible party is defined as the person shown to have exclusive possession of the property (a present possessory interest). If no responsible party is present upon the premises, the responsible party is deemed to be the property owner(s), as determined by reference to the records of the St. Joseph County Assessor. In such an instance, copies of the citation must be mailed to the property owner as determined from the Assessor’s records.

(b) Any person wishing to give a supervised public display of fireworks may do so by first procuring a license from the City and filing bond in the sum of fifty thousand dollars ($50,000.00), conditioned on the payment of all damages which may be caused either to a person or property by reason of such licensed display or arising from any acts of the licensee, his agents, employees or subcontractors. The license fee shall be twenty dollars ($20.00) per day for each day of such public display.

(c) Any public display of fireworks shall be conducted in all things in accordance with the rules and regulations adopted and set out by the Fire Marshal of the State, and as the same are restricted or designated by the Acts of the General Assembly of the State. All definitions contained in such acts shall apply to the terms of this section.
(Code 1962, § 26-11; Ord. No. 9769-07, § I, 6-25-07)

Ask A Cops! May 12, 2010

Posted by southbendpolice in Ask A Cop.
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Q: My dad and I were driving downtown today and I saw a “CVO” car with red and blue lights on it. My dad didn’t believe me and said that only NEST and regular marked patrol cars have blue and red lights. Do CVO’s have blue and red light on them?

A: Yes our CVO (Civilian Volunteer Officers) patrol cars do have red and blue lights, which by the rules of the CVO program are allowed to be used only when the vehicle is parked and stationary. The primary duties of CVOs in this case are for controlling and directing traffic, and for purposes of Indiana Law require red and blue lights designating them able to do so. CVOs to not perform traffic stops or other criminal enforcement.

Q: If my dog gets out of my yard and into the street,I was told that I could be liable for damages to someone’s vehicle if he were to get hit due to the leash law in St. Joe county. Is this true? I can find references to a leash law in news stories,
but cannot find the actual ordinance anywhere.

A: By city law ordinance, owners must restrain their pets at all times, and failure to do so could put you liable for civil penalties or damage claims. More info on the city Animal Control website here.

Q: Is there anything I can do, legally/in general, to stop my neighbor from driving through my backyard. She can access her backyard through the same alley, it’s just easier to drive across my lawn in her opinion. I’ve talked to her about it multiple times and she ignores me.

A: You may be able to fence or partition your property off with some means of fencing, cable, or other obstruction that would prevent a vehicle from being driven past it on your property. You may also want to contact an attorney for further civil remedy advice, as it is not a criminal matter police can enforce. The Lawyer Referral Program of the St. Joseph County Bar Association is an attorney referral program that places clients in need of services with an attorney suited to meet their legal needs. When you inquire about a referral you will need to explain the particular area of law, or the circumstances of the situation that prompts you to seek an attorney. Call 574.235.9657 or visit their web site for additional information.

Q: Are people with burglar alarms required to register them with the South Bend Police Department?

A: No. More information on the city alarm ordinance and w word about police response to alarms is covered here.

Q: I was arrested in 1999 and charged with domestic battery. I took a plea agreement for misdemeanor battery and completed a course of anger management as well. Due to this charge I am not able to obtain employment through the prison or police systems. Can I get a petition to restore my firearms rights and if the courts granted it would I be able to get a position in either prisons or local police depts.? What can I do to become weapon certifiable again and have the right to possess firearms?

A: Conviction of Domestic Battery by Indiana Law (and true of most other states as well) will preclude you from obtaining employment in law enforcement and to have a weapons carry permit or to possess, as defined in IC 35-47-2-1

Carrying a handgun without a license or by person convicted of domestic battery
35-47-2-1 Sec. 1. (a) Except as provided in subsection (b) and section 2 of this
chapter, a person shall not carry a handgun in any vehicle or on or about the person’s
body, except in the person’s dwelling, on the person’s property or fixed place of
business, without a license issued under this chapter being in the person’s possession.
(b) Unless the person’s right to possess a firearm has been restored under IC 3-7-13-
5 or IC 33-28-4-8, a person who has been convicted of domestic battery under IC 35-
42-2-1.3 may not possess or carry a handgun in any vehicle or on or about the person’s
body in the person’s dwelling or on the person’s property or fixed place of business.

Q: Is it legal in the state of Indiana to modify a 49cc moped and it still be street legal?

A: Modifying being a generic term I assume you are meaning to create more power, etc. With that said that would change the bike from a “motorized bicycle”/moped designation to that of a “motorcycle” by IN law which would require licensing. As such, When a scooter is considered a motorcycle:
(1)When it is rated at more than 2HP; and
(2)When it has more than 50cc; and
(3)When the designed speed is greater than 25MPH.

If this is the case in the latter example, then it is considered a motorcycle
(i) Drivers and passengers under 18 must wear head and eye protection;
(ii) Drivers must have with them a valid motorcycle endorsement or motorcycle learners permit;
(iii) The vehicle must be registered (license plates) and insured;
(iv)All other motor vehicle laws apply;
(v) It may be driven by no more than 2 side by side in a single lane.

Q: I live with two friends who both have a felony conviction. If I got my gun permit and it was an issue, if the police asked ask me if anybody had a felony and I said yes would they go to jail because of their felony?

A: Persons with a felony conviction are prohibited from possessing firearms, so it would depend upon the circumstances, however it would be your responsibility as a gun owner to take steps that the gun would be secured at home, or only in your immediate possession. If they would not be deemed as having access to the weapon, then it would not likely be confiscated or persons arrested for “possession” if they did not have access to it in the house, as an example.

I need to renew my concealed carry permit because I have recently moved from Elkhart to South Bend. Where do I need to go to renew?

A: If you live within the city of South Bend limits (3 or 4 digit address) then you would need to stop by the Records office in the lobby of the station, at 701 W Sample between 8am-6pm, Mon-Friday. State Handgun Permit Applications are currently: $10.00 (4-year) $50.00 for lifetime permit.