PINE BELT (WDAM) - People looking to ring in the New Year by shooting fireworks will have to be aware of where they're shooting them, because it's illegal in some cities in the Pine Belt.
"In the city of Hattiesburg, it is illegal to possess or sell fireworks in the City of Hattiesburg," said Hattiesburg Police Lt. Latosha Myers-Mitchell. "Even though fireworks are fun and we like to do it around the holiday season, it is illegal for you to shoot fireworks in the city limits."
It's one ordinance that the Hattiesburg Police Department will be enforcing this year and can lead to a fine or even jail time.
"We do enforce this city ordinance because of safety issues for the person that's doing it and for anyone that may get injured with fireworks," Myers-Mitchell said. "Fireworks can be very dangerous if you're inexperienced with them and the city ordinance protects citizens from injuries with fireworks an also from fires that may occur."
Myers-Mitchell said officers will be on the lookout and that help from the community is needed if violators are spotted.
"If you see fireworks or you hear fireworks in your community or in and around the city, please call the Hattiesburg Police Department or Metro Crime Stoppers, because we want to keep everybody safe. It's a fun time, but those ordinances are in place for a reason and we want to keep people safe this season," said Myers-Mitchell.
Laurel has a similar law, and residents who violate the firework ordinance may be issued a citation or given a fine.
Petal also has an ordinance against fireworks in the city limits, and residents who violate the ordinance may face a misdemeanor charge, a fine or jail time.
If you do have any questions concerning the specific city ordinances, you can contact that county or city government office for further details.