Completed investigation gives reason for Channelside 4th of July fireworks mishap

Posted at 4:27 PM, Jul 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-20 23:21:53-04

The investigation into the 4th of July Channelside fireworks show mishap has been completed, and the reason for the malfunction has been identified.

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PYROTECNICO, the official aerial-fireworks display vendor for Channelside Bay Plaza, conducted the investigation following an "equipment malfunction" during the Independence Day performance.

“Our investigation has confirmed that a computer communication issue is what caused the equipment failure during the recent aerial-fireworks display at Channelside Bay Plaza for the 2017 Light Up Tampa Bay Independence Day Celebration,” said Chris Liberatore, Vice President, PYROTECNICO.

The company says the technician assigned to the event did everything correctly, and that despite functioning properly before the show, the computer communication issue affected both the primary and back-up system.

PYROTECNICO says the system was isolated and will not be used again.

“At PYROTECNICO, we strive to create world-class productions that deliver the best experiences possible for our clients and their customers,” said Liberatore. “We offer our sincerest apologies to the City of Tampa and our client, Channelside Bay Plaza and will do everything we can to ensure that this will not happen again.”

The company offered to refund Channelside Bay Plaza part of its expenses for the unused product and loss in show value, and will be hosting a complimentary display for the area's New Year's Eve celebration.

“We are glad that the issue has been addressed by PYROTECNICO,” said Darrah Winkler[], Marketing and Events Manager, Channelside Bay Plaza.  “Our organization truly enjoys creating a vibrant atmosphere for the City of Tampa and the Channel District. Channelside Bay Plaza looks forward to working with PYROTECNICO on our 2017 Light Up Tampa Bay New Year’s Eve Celebration and continuing to host the area’s most exciting and unique lifestyle events.”