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Recent tragedies show there are no “safe” fireworks.
Since 2014 many high powered fireworks have been legal in Michigan. Used properly, they can be a source of great fun and entertainment. Used improperly, however, they can cause serious injury or death, and cause accidental fires.
In 2014, a 44-year-old Detroit man was killed in an accident involving a high powered firework. In 2015, a 47-year old Walled Lake man died in a similar accident.
To help Detroiters celebrate safely this year, Detroit Executive Fire Commissioner Eric Jones is reminding people that there is no such thing as safe fireworks and to use basic precautions.
“Something as basic as a sparkler, which a lot of children play with, can get up to 2,000 degrees,” Jones said. “In fact, sparklers cause nearly half of the fireworks injuries that send people to the hospital each year.”
With larger scale fireworks now available to the general public, Jones is urging people to use only legal fireworks purchased from an authorized seller. He recommends that all residents refrain from any use of fireworks. However, if residents use legal fireworks, he urges proper use at all times.
Those who decide to use fireworks should adhere to the following precautions:
- Do not wear loose clothing, which may contact the fireworks. To prevent accidental burns, wear long sleeves and pants if you are lighting fireworks.
- Always wear appropriate eye protection.
- Store unused fireworks in a cool, dry place.
- Ignite fireworks outside and away from the house, garage or any other structure.
- Set off fireworks on a hard, flat surface in an open area. Never ignite fireworks on a dry grassy area.
- Never ignite fireworks inside any container, glass bottle or metal cylinders.
- Always keep a safe distance.
Be smart. Stay safe.
- Never experiment with fireworks, especially around vehicles that may contain residual flammable liquids i.e. gasoline
- Never try to re-light fireworks that malfunction.
- If a firework does not go off, stay away. Do NOT get close to check it.
- Keep a bucket of water or hose handy, just in case.
- Light fireworks one at a time. Leave the professional show to the professionals.
- Never light fireworks if you’ve been consuming alcohol or drugs.
The City’s fireworks ordinance and state law emphasizes the restrictions involving the possession and sale and use of fireworks. The ordinance prohibits the sale of any type of fireworks to anyone under 18 years of age.
Detroit fire Prevention and Protection Code, Chapter 19, Section 19-1-43.
(a) A person shall not ignite, discharge, or use consumer fireworks, except on the day preceding, the day of, or the day after a national holiday.
(b) A person shall not ignite, discharge, or use consumer fireworks between the hours of midnight and 8 a.m. on national holidays not including New Year’s Day, or between the hours of 1 a.m. and 8 a.m. on New Year’s Day.
(c) A person shall not ignite, discharge, or use consumer fireworks on public property, school property, church property, or the property of another person without that organization’s or person’s express permission.
With the exception of the following holidays (New Law Changes) Michigan Fireworks Safety ACT PA 256, Section 7 (1, 2)
(a) December 31 until 1 a.m. on January 1.
(b) The Saturday and Sunday immediately preceding Memorial Day until 11:45 p.m. on each of those days.
(c) June 29 to July 4 until 11:45 p.m. on each of those days.
(d) July 5, if that date is a Friday or Saturday, until 11:45 p.m.
(e) The Saturday and Sunday immediately preceding Labor Day until 11:45 p.m. on each of those days.
All of the fireworks information can be accessed on the State of Michigan Bureau of Fire Services (BFS) Fireworks Program webpage at:
http://www.michigan.gov/bfs and click on the Fireworks link.
You may call the Fireworks line 517-373-7441, the main line 517-241-8847, or email to [email protected]