For most Americans, fireworks have been a part of 4th of July festivities since the very first celebration of Independence Day in 1777. Fireworks displays are fun and entertaining, but only remain so when everyone understands the importance of legal and safety compliance.
According to the National Council on Fireworks Safety, more than 10,000 people each year are severely injured by fireworks, and 40% of those injuries come from illegal fireworks. In addition, 45% of those injuries involved children 14 or younger. Fireworks are responsible for about 20,000 fires each year.
Connecticut Fireworks Laws (or Fireworks are Illegal In Connecticut)
Simply put, Connecticut law prohibits the sale, possession or use of fireworks without a permit. And that is everything. Sparklers and fountains, which produce sparks when lit, are not considered fireworks and are legal in Connecticut, but cannot be sold or used by anyone younger than 16.
The State Fire Marshal issues permits for supervised displays of fireworks and the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection licenses fireworks displays, special effects, fireworks and special effects shooters, and fireworks distributors and manufacturers. Roman candles, smoke bombs, firecrackers, snakes, skyrockets, and bottle rockets are illegal fireworks in Connecticut
Violations of fireworks laws could face hefty fines or even jail time. Or, worse, if your fireworks hurt people or cause damage to property, not only will you cause unintentional pain and suffering, you could end up having to pay medical bills or for property damage bills. With that in mind, knowing the legal guidelines for firework displays isn’t enough. It’s important to take appropriate precautions with safety in mind.
Enjoy Legal Sparklers & Fountains Only; Fireworks are Illegal in Connecticut;
Common sense is your best guide but a few tips are worth repeating:
- Beware of suspicious sellers that may sell you dangerous or malfunctioning materials, and never make your own!
- When using sparklers & fountains, always make sure there is adult supervision and don’t let small children near legal sparklers & fountains.
- Always light legal sparklers & fountains one at a time and outdoors.
- Make sure you have water nearby, and avoid arid, hot areas.
- Never point legal sparklers & fountains at another person or animal.
- Carry legal sparklers & fountains in metal or glass containers, not in your pocket or in a flammable container.
- Whoever is lighting legal sparklers & fountains must wear proper eye protection and make sure their body is not in the way of the legal sparklers & fountains.
- Before using, store legal sparklers & fountains in a cool, dry place.
- After use, dispose of legal sparklers & fountains safely by placing them in water and putting them in the trash can.
Have an exciting, law-abiding, and safe Fourth of July celebration!
If you need legal advice or representation or just want to talk about Connecticut’s fireworks laws, please feel free to call Attorney John Radshaw in New Haven today at (203) 654-9695. For more information about Attorney Radshaw and his practice, visit www.jjr-esq.com.