Fort Worth was forced to shut down its Fourth of July fireworks show due to a series of grass fires that ignited along the Trinity River.
Advertised as the largest July 4 fireworks show in North Texas, the show took place at Panther Island Pavilion, and was canceled only a few minutes after it started, when fires immediately began to break out on the Trinity River banks.
A video by Fox 4 News documented the entire scene, beginning with a brief fireworks display, followed by fire department trucks arriving to extinguish the fires.
According to a release from the city of Fort Worth, the decision to shut it down was made "out of an abundance of caution."
The city has hosted a fireworks show at Panther Island since 2008. According to Fox 4, the fireworks had previously been handled by a company called Extreme Pyrotechnics, but this year the show was handled by a new company called Magic In The Sky.
Fort Worth and Tarrant County are currently in a drought, rated between severe and extreme. On June 28, the Tarrant County Commissioners Court approved an outdoor burning ban for Tarrant County, banning all burning in Tarrant County for 90 days.
A spokesperson for the city said that officials had been preparing for the possibility of grass fires and that the Tarrant Regional Water District had been mowing the grass and watering it to keep it moist.
According to the Fort Worth Fire Department, by 11:30 pm on July 4, the total number of grass/brush fires they battled in Fort Worth was 189, versus 17 for the entire year in 2021.
The remaining fireworks at Panther Island are being deployed on July 5 by Fort Worth Fire Department's Bomb & Arson Unit and the pyrotechnics company, who warned residents to expect accompanying noise.