The Mexico City government is warning residents of the capital to avoid buying and setting off fireworks for the celebration of Mexico’s independence on Sunday and Monday.
Authorities warned revelers that setting off fireworks in public places without a permit is prohibited under the city’s Civic Culture Law, and that those caught in violation will face penalties.
They range from 13 to 36 hours of jail time, a fine of between 930 and 2,534 pesos (US $48 and $130), and 18 hours of community service.
Since December 2018, 25 people have been sanctioned for setting off fireworks without the required permits. Miguel Hidalgo was the borough with the most violations, at 13, followed by Tlalpan and Venustiano Carranza, which had four each.
In the city of Toluca, an environmentalist group staged a demonstration outside the municipal palace calling on people to avoid setting off fireworks because of the negative effect they can have on air quality, which can persist for days.
On December 31 last year, the Mexico City government decided not to include fireworks in its official New Year celebrations because of concerns about air quality. However, fireworks set off by individuals helped cause pollution levels to rise, triggering an environmental contingency that lasted until January 2, 2019.