New York Mayor Bill De Blasio is promising to crack down on illegal fireworks across the city after a large uptick in complaints. Late Monday night, fed up residents drove past Gracie Mansion, the mayor's official residence, honking their horns in protest of the nightly nuisance plaguing cities across the country.
“So if we can’t sleep, Mr. Mayor, you won’t sleep,” Councilman Chaim Deutsch said in a video posted to social media.
On Tuesday, De Blasio announced the formation of a new task force consisting of police officers and fire officials.
“We’re going to start a huge sting operation to go and get these illegal fireworks at the base, meaning everywhere they’re being sold,” De Blasio said in a press conference.
In New York City, possessing fireworks is illegal, but people often purchase them across the border in New Jersey or Pennsylvania, where there are fewer restrictions.
There have also been several fireworks-related injuries in recent days, including in Harlem, where men were captured on video throwing a firework at a sleeping homeless man, who suffered burns and had to be hospitalized.