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Fireworks in New York State: Local police officer explains what is legal and what is illegal

Published on July 02, 2022

Fireworks 2022

BOONVILLE- It wouldn't be a Fourth of July celebration without some fireworks, but if you're not going to a professional fireworks event, local authorities are warning to ensure your supply is legal.

Ground-based or hand held sparkling devices including cylindrical fountains, cone fountains, and wood sparklers/dipped sticks; party poppers, snappers are all legal in New York State. 

According to New York's Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, sparkling devices are ground based or handheld devices that produce a shower of colored sparks and or a colored flame, audible crackling or whistling noise and smoke.

The law limits the type, size and construction of Sparkling Devices and requires that these devices must be hand held or mounted on a base or spike and be limited in sizes that range from 1 to 500 grams of pyrotechnic composition. 

However - "If they launch a projectile into the air that explodes in the air, now you are in the illegal territory considered 'dangerous fireworks,'" said Boonville Police Department Officer in Charge Fred Robenski. 

"The illegal fireworks that are out there, you don't buy them by accident at one of these tents. You have to go the extra distance." 

Officer Robenski warns there are serious safety concerns with illegal fireworks, which contributes to such related injuries this time of year. 

In addition, illegal fireworks have potential to bring about civil penalties - such as a pet running away or someone with PTSD suffering an episode, Robenski explained.

For more on the difference between legal and illegal fireworks in New York State, be sure to listen to our latest on-air interview with Boonville Police Department Officer in Charge Fred Robenski:

Image by Brian Trainor.

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