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Hearing More Fireworks Lately? You’re Not Alone

Ray Conrado

There’s been a significant uptick in complaints about fireworks going off in the Bay Area recently. But is there actually an uptick this year?

The sounds of fireworks are common in the weeks leading up to every fourth of July. But in the Bay Area there’s been a significant increase in the number of noise complaints, this year. In San Francisco, June complaints are up 72% over last year.

Residents are calling 911 and 311 to report loud booms and bangs in the night — claiming that they sound and feel more intense than usual. There’s no specific data to back up whether there are more fireworks going off than in previous years, but similar complaints are being heard in Los Angeles, Boston, New York, and across the country.

The potential increase is still a mystery to Bay Area police and firefighters. Some officials suspect that people are just wanting to let off some steam during shelter in place. There is speculation on social media that it’s part of a government campaign to destabilize protests about police violence. There is no indication that these theories are necessarily true.