On July 4th, Rules of Physics Still Apply

Posted on Jul 03, 2018

What goes up, must come down. It’s the law of gravitational pull. Still, people often celebrate July 4th by firing guns into the air. Whether they realize it or not, this can cause serious unintentional harm, life-threatening injuries, and even death, within a pretty wide radius.

Celebratory gunfire has wounded hundreds and killed dozens in recent years in the US. A bullet fired into the sky that makes human contact on its way down will most likely strike the victim on the head, shoulders, or feet. Moreover, from a scientific standpoint, it’s very difficult to fire a bullet perfectly straight into the air. Rounds fired at angles of 20 to 45 percent in particular are likely to strike someone on their way down and can cause death from considerable distance. There are laws to help prevent people from shooting into the sky, but more education and community enforcement are required. 

Complicating matters is the fact that it’s often difficult to distinguish the sounds of intentional or unintentional gunfire from even the simplest fireworks display. Often, if shots are fired during a public celebration, nobody can hear them against the fireworks, or determine who fired them, or even from what direction the shots came.

"I just felt something wet on me and I looked down and I had blood everywhere," a 2012 victim remembers. She didn’t realize what had hit her at a public fireworks display. Luckily, she was near Coral Gables police officers— the Coral Gables, FL Police Dept. is an NC4 Street Smart® customer— who quickly administered first aid. This victim survived without life-threatening injuries. "I still don't understand shooting into the air on the Fourth of July and on New Year's. It happens,” said the victim. “It has to stop."

“Whether you are in the private sector and need to monitor major incidents like shootings or wildfires from fireworks — or are a law enforcement agency monitoring gunfire hotspots or gun-toting offenders; NC4 has the revolutionary solutions to support your duty of care to your personnel and your community,” says intelligence-led-policing expert John Bennett, retired Assistant Chief of Police at the Tampa Police Department.

With its innovative technology, Street Smart helps officers implement proactive, intelligence-led policing techniques that result in strengthened relationships with the community. NC4 Street Smart enables officers to connect and share relevant information in real time, all while having up-to-the-minute crime data at their fingertips while out on patrol in their communities. Have a safe and happy Fourth of July!


NC4 Street Smart benefits everyone across all communities. For more information on the platforms available to your organization, contact NC4 at 877-624-4999, or feel free to email us anytime at info@NC4.com.



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