Gated communities on Hilton Head Island have had signs posted for weeks about illegal fireworks and extremely dry conditions. I have seen nothing posted in the Forest Beach-Coligny area, nor was this issue addressed in The Island Packet before July 4.
During the past three weeks, I have experienced only one night (July 5) without fireworks. An officer told me the morning of July 4 that only one officer was assigned to the entire beach area. A different officer said that evening that there were only six deputies for the whole island that night.
I had more than 100 remnants of firework activity on and around my house. This does not include all the material strewn on my roof.
The failure to enforce laws pertaining to the beach is nothing new. Unfortunately, disrespect for our environment and other people has increased over the 20 years I have lived on Hilton Head.
The irony is that the majority of tourists do not want to be awakened by fireworks and don't covet the possibility that their family would come to harm or property destroyed because of the town's indifference to laws that protect the populace. The town has also made it difficult for those responsible for enforcing laws by not giving them the power and the numbers they need. Rather, they take the risk that everyone, including our police and firemen, may suffer irreparable injury.
I don't know of any other place in the United States where fireworks can be used indiscriminately and with no consequences.
Hilton Head Island