Borough board giving fireworks company another shot


By Andreas Yilma, Staff Writer

Fireworks explode over downtown Naugatuck on July 2, 2020, during the borough’s annual fireworks show. The show was cut short after a ground-level explosion at the site of the display. –FILE PHOTO

NAUGATUCK — Officials are giving a Maine company another shot at putting on the borough’s Fourth of July fireworks show.

The Board of Mayor and Burgesses on April 6 unanimously approved a deal with Central Main Pyrotechnics of Farmingdale, Maine, for a Fourth of July fireworks show for $15,000. The agreement includes $5,000 for another show between September and December.

The company put on the fireworks show last July. Last year’s show ended abruptly about 10 minutes in after a ground-level detonation where the fireworks display was set up on Breen Field off Hotchkiss Street. The explosion left burn marks on the field and damaged a nearby fence and sponsor signs that hung on the fence. No one was injured.

The borough didn’t pay anything for the fireworks show last year. The company paid about $5,000 for damages and overtime costs.

Sandra Ribeiro, assistant to the public works director, told the board last week that the investigation determined Central Main Pyrotechnics was not negligible and a faulty mortar caused the explosion.

Burn marks are seen on Breen Field in Naugatuck on July 3, 2020. A malfunction occurred during the borough’s fireworks show the night before causing an explosion at the site that also damaged the fence and nearby signs. -FILE PHOTO

“They are eager to redeem themselves and put on a show for Naugatuck,” Ribeiro said. “I had a conversation with Anthony (Marson), the owner of the business. When the incident did happen, they were very gracious.”

Mayor N. Warren “Pete” Hess said the company dealt with the situation and the borough well.­

“They definitely, in my mind, deserve another shot,” Hess said.

Borough officials scheduled the Fourth of July fireworks celebration for July 2 with a rain date of July 3.

Hess said officials will make a final decision on whether to hold the show as it gets closer based on the status of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ribeiro said Central Main Pyrotechnics isn’t requiring a deposit for the fireworks show.