PUEBLO — Although fireworks are illegal to shoot off at home in the city of Pueblo, people in the community hear them frequently this time of the year.
For some people, the booms and pops of festivities can be the exact opposite of worth celebrating.
“For me, the fireworks remind me of like loud banging that is directly correlated to my trauma,” said Ari Adamē, who has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from years of abuse and homelessness.
“I am seeing all these things in my brain. It's like one picture after the other of the event that happened and it’s like happening to you all over again! “
Adamē took to Facebook to remind people in Pueblo that fireworks on random evenings can pose problems for people suffering from PTSD. They were met with support from pet owners, parents of children with autism, those with epilepsy, and veterans. However, others said that the people's "triggers" should not be anyone else's problem.
“It’s that serious, and it doesn’t feel that serious when you haven’t grasped it because you haven’t been in that situation, but it is."
The Pueblo Riverwalk, CSU Pueblo, and Pueblo West are just several places that legally set off fireworks on special occasions.
“It’s a lot nicer watching the professionals do their shows, and not having to worry about - Where’s the punk? Where’s the lighter? Who’s going to light it now? And just kind of sit back and enjoy the professional shows,“ said Sergeant Frank Ortega with the Pueblo Police Department.
When responding to calls about illegal fireworks, “Obviously, if the person is having distress or other issues because of the fireworks, it’s more of an issue than just the fireworks,“ said Ortega.
The PPD says the first fine for illegal use of fireworks is $250.00, the second is $500.00, and the third will require a decision from a judge.
Plus, Adamē says there are other fun ways to celebrate with those close to you.
“Barbecue, I mean that’s fun! Have a party. You can still be noisy, without making it everybody’s problem!“
If you are looking for help with PTSD, Adamē recommends contacting Health Solutions.