On the eve of the Fourth of July, the city of Charleston, West Virginia is busily preparing for its annual Independence Day fireworks extravaganza. It's one of the largest fireworks displays in the area with up to 500 fireworks blasting off.
Pyrotecnico has been doing the firework display for the city of Charleston for the last few years. They began the 36-hour preparations Thursday, July 3.
Safety zones have already been established. Fire safety standards require 70 feet of safety zone for every inch of shell. The largest shells used in the Charleston display are six inches making the largest safety zone 420 feet.
The fireworks will be shot off from MacCorkle Avenue. That road will be shut down Friday evening at 6:30 from about Rt. 119 to Porter Road.
For added safety and logistical reasons, these fireworks are set off electronically. Operators at the two different set-off sites on MacCorkle Avenue will synchronize the show using radio communication.
Despite safety concerns, many say the Fourth of July simply wouldn't be Independence Day without fireworks.
The fireworks display begins at 9:30 Friday night and will last about 25 minutes. Two Charleston fire engines, three fire boats, and Charleston police will be patrolling the area.
After a 10 minute cool down period once the fireworks show is over, cleanup will begin and should wrap up around 11:30 p.m.