NORTHWEST ARKANSAS (KNWA) — Fireworks popped across Northwest Arkansas Thursday and will continue to pop throughout the weekend, leaving debris that is considered ecologically harmful.
Crews in major Northwest Arkansas cities such as Bentonville and Fayetteville are working to clean up firework debris.
“Any firework debris would be considered litter,” said Peter Nierengarten, Fayetteville’s environmental director. “We have standards. We do street sweeping. We have litter abatement in the downtown area.”
Benton County Detention Center inmate crews were used to clean up firework debris from a wide area that spans from Memorial Park to the edge of the park from which the fireworks were shot off. That edge connects to Crystal Bridges, according to Sgt. Gene Page, public information officer for the Bentonville Fire Department.
The inmates picked up debris that fell into open fields, as well as a nearby waterway, Page said.
Community members are asked to take responsibility when it comes to cleaning up firework debris from residential areas.
“We’ve done it in years past, but there hasn’t been enough debris to justify running cleanup equipment through all the streets,” Page said.
Nierengarten said Fayetteville residents are also asked to clean up their firework debris.
Fireworks are made of heavy metals, sulfur-coal compounds and noxious chemicals that can cause air pollution and be hazardous to water sources, according to The Environmental Magazine.