BEACHWOOD — This year's installment of the borough's long-running Independence Day fireworks has been canceled, because a backup driver wasn't available to deliver the fireworks.

Beachwood Mayor Ron Roma said that the company putting on the display informed him Wednesday morning that it did not have a driver to take the fireworks from Maryland to the Ocean County borough.

"This company, as far as I am concerned, this is pretty poor business," Roma said, adding that when he puts on a monthly dance for sixth- and seventh-graders he has a back up DJ so the kids won't be disappointed.

"You need to have backup licensed drivers. I understand there's hazardous materials. I understand they have rules they have to follow. You can't just get any guy to drive a truck. They failed us. They failed the people, they failed everybody. Now we don't have a fireworks display," Roma said.

Roma said that the company was scheduled to bring the fireworks the day of the display because there's no place to store them ahead of time.

The display over the Toms River has gone on for 77 years. This year, the borough contracted with a new company — Fireworks Extravaganza — because the company used last year could not provide a show, according to Roma.

A call to Fireworks Extravaganza, which is based in Rochelle Park, was answered with a  message that it is are closed for the holiday.

Roma said there will be no makeup date for the display.

"Logistically from a law enforcement standpoint they couldn't guarantee us they could do all of this again. This is weeks and weeks of preparation they could not duplicate," Roma said.

An arrangement also has to be made with the Coast Guard for the display.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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