Safety and supervision are keys to successful celebrations
Frankfort, Ky. (June 6, 2011) – Even though Kentucky law now allows for the purchase of fireworks that shoot in the air, officials with the Division of Fire Prevention are reminding Kentuckians that safety and supervision remain the keys to a successful celebration.
“This year, state law allows for the purchase of fireworks that are known as ‘1.4 Consumer Fireworks,’” said William Swope, director of the Division of Fire Prevention who also serves as Kentucky’s state fire marshal. “This does not mean that fireworks you see at professional shows are legal; they are not. What this does mean is that popular fireworks like Roman candles, firecrackers and bottle rockets can now be sold and used legally by consumers in our state, providing that local ordinances allow this activity.
“However, there are safety guidelines set in statute that need to be followed,” added Swope.
People under 18 cannot sell or purchase fireworks; fireworks cannot be used within 200 feet of a structure, vehicle or other person; and fireworks cannot be sold to anyone who is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
The new law also sets permitting requirements for the sale of fireworks in the state. There are three types of registrations available: limited sales line of consumer fireworks (what was legal last year), seasonal retailers and permanent business establishments. These vendors are required to report to the Division of Fire Prevention the address where the sales will take place, where the fireworks will be stored and a description of how the fireworks will be stored. Seasonal retailers can only sell fireworks from June 10-July 7 and Dec. 26-Jan. 4.
Local vendors and citizens are required to comply with any and all local ordinances that apply to the sale, purchase and use of fireworks.
“Let’s make this Fourth of July holiday a safe one for all Kentuckians,” said Swope.
The Division of Fire Prevention offers the following safety tips to keep your family safe over the upcoming July 4th holiday and throughout the summer:
· Use fireworks outdoors only.
· Obey local laws. If fireworks are not legal where you live, do not use them.
· Always have a bucket of water or a working water hose nearby.
· Only use fireworks as intended. Don't try to alter them or combine them.
· Never relight a "dud" firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
· Use common sense. Spectators should keep a safe distance from the shooter and the shooter should wear safety glasses.
· Alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Have a "designated adult shooter."
· Do not use homemade fireworks or illegal explosives: They can kill you!
· Report illegal explosives to the fire or police department in your community.
Additional information on firework safety, regulations and permitting, including an informational bulletin on firework sales, can be found on the Public Protection Cabinet’s website at http://dhbc.ky.gov/fp/fw/default.htm.