TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - Dry conditions across Kansas are prompting state officials to curb use of fireworks at state parks and lakes for the July 4 holiday.
Professional fireworks displays have been canceled at Cedar Bluff, Lovewell, Kanopolis, Prairie Dog and Wilson state parks. Professional displays are still scheduled near Milford State Park, Pomona State Park and Tuttle Creek State Park.
The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism also said Tuesday that only two of the state's 26 state parks will allow personal fireworks to be used on the holiday. Visitors may use them in restricted areas of Perry State Park and at Elk City State Park.
Authorities are asking residents to take extra care with those celebratory bottle rockets and barbecues.
Kansas Secretary of Agriculture Dale Rodman issued a statement Tuesday urging caution because "it only takes a small spark to ignite a large fire."
Burn bans have been posted across about half the state as a heat wave that has been baking the country for the past week continues to take its toll in Kansas.
Gov. Sam Brownback said Tuesday that 36 counties are in drought emergency, 55 counties are in drought warning status and 14 are in watch status.
Park officials are also advising visitors to heed weather advisories to avoid dangerous health conditions brought on by the excessive heat.
The National Weather Service says the prolonged heat wave will linger, with triple-digit temperatures and no chance of rain expected in Kansas for the rest of the week. Temperatures are forecast to be in the upper 90s and lower 100s.
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