With the Fourth of July holiday quickly approaching, Boone County officials are urging residents to not call 911 to report fireworks.
Boone County Public Safety Joint Communications is asking residents to use the non-emergency phone number for fireworks complaints. Residents can call (573) 442-6131 to make a report of fireworks.
Officials say if someone is injured by fireworks or they cause a fire, then calling 911 is appropriate. However, non-emergency calls clog the phone line and could prevent dispatchers and crews from responding to an actual emergency in a timely manner.
A number of Mid-Missouri towns, including Columbia, Jefferson City and Osage Beach, prohibit residents from setting off fireworks within city limits.
Columbia police announced they will be increasing patrols for the holiday week. Extra officers will be on duty to handle calls through Friday.