More than 3 decades of providing the pyro-technics for USU fireworks show

It’s now been 32 years for Al Burns at Fireworks West overseeing the Logan fireworks show at Utah State University. Burns, who is vice-president of the company, was on KVNU’s For the People program which broadcast live from the stadium before Freedom Fire 2018 began Tuesday evening. He praised all the organizers of the program, including police and fire departments that make his job easier and fun to do after all these years. He said technology has changed the show inside the stadium with use of computers that better assist syncing the show to the music.

“I’m up halfway up the seats on the east side and I’m there with the city fire marshal and the university fire marshal. Halfway up on that upper concourse we can see the whole area,” Burns explained.

He said fire officials are located at 13 strategic locations to help keep everyone safe. He said they have very good communication between the stage, the pyro-technicians and the fire department and law enforcement.

“We have five different firing stations for different sizes of shells and each one has their own cage. We have a team of people in each cage, one person to watch what’s going on and another guy to fire the stuff. The people that work hard to set it up, they like to be down there.”

He said his crew is tired after being involved in 10 shows this time of year. He said he has different divisions that will keep busy with displays on Pioneer Day and then founders days in different parts of the state over the next couple months.

Fireworks West International has some noteworthy credentials. In 2002, the  company was awarded the bid for the Salt Lake Winter Olympics. For the duration of the Olympic ceremonies they produced nightly displays in Salt Lake City and Park City. They have also represented the United States in two world competitions held in Sweden.

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