Given the high fire danger in Big Bear, which is unique in its wildland urban interface, no fireworks of any kind are allowed, per the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department. As no fireworks are permitted in the San Bernardino mountains, we’re told that routine vehicle searches by law enforcement personnel may be possible. Fines for the possession of illegal fireworks can be as much as $5000 and, per the Big Bear Lake Fire Department’s Assistant Fire Chief Mark Mills, even the possession of safe and sane fireworks (which are legal in other communities) can result in a fine of $500 to $1100 and, Mills tells KBHR, “even so much as dropping a cigarette could cost you $1100.” In order to make for a fire-safe Fourth of July, local agencies have set some restrictions for the Big Bear Valley. Says Mills, “We’re not allowing any open fires. Even if you have a BarBQ, you’ll have to use either charcoal briquettes or propane. On the Fourth of July, no charcoal BarBQs will be allowed on the lakeshore, because the concern is that it may spill over and people may step in it.” Please use caution while enjoying your Independence Day celebration, and know that roving patrols by law enforcement and fire agencies, as well as the U.S. Forest Service, will be implemented throughout the Valley and around the lake during the holiday–and, also this year, roving patrols by these same agencies, as well as the Municipal Water District, will be taking place on Big Bear Lake.