MILFORD - Members of the Bay View Beach Association in Milford tonight protested the closing of the beach this Independence Day.

The Association's Board of Directors made the decision following a fireworks injury last year.

The Beach Association says that last year a launch tube tipped over, sending an explosive shell along the beach that hit a spectator just below the waist. The woman was hospitalized with serious burns.

Protesters fighting to keep the beach open say they understand the dangers and are willing to work something out to make it safer, possibly increasing the distance between the fireworks and the spectators.

The Beach Association says it has hired Milford police officers as guards, but it is not clear if they will keep everyone off the beach or only those with fireworks.