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Use of fireworks on the 4th of July holiday

The Independence Day holiday is the busiest time of the year for the use of fireworks. The State of Michigan allows the sale and use of consumer-grade fireworks, such as roman candles, bottle rockets and other aerial explosives. For Independence Day, state law allows personal displays to be set off from 8 a.m. to midnight on July 3, 4 and 5. It prohibits municipalities from banning their use on federal holidays and one day before and after those holidays.

It is unlawful to ignite fireworks on public property, school grounds, church property, or the property of another person without that organization's or person's express permission. Violation carries a $500 fine. Also, it is a misdemeanor for a person to use fireworks while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The penalty is 30 days in prison, a fine of $500, or both.

Fireworks law has drawn citizen objections
Many residents have complained about the state’s restrictions governing the fireworks ordinance in the City of Northville. If you are interested in changing the laws regarding local control of fireworks, please contact your state representative or state senator. If you don’t know who they are, find out here.

The current fireworks law, P.A. 256, went into effect on Jan. 1, 2012. An amendment in 2013 allows local municipalities to set their own restrictions on fireworks usage, except during the day and evening hours of federal holidays and the day before and after the holiday.
You can read the “Michigan Fireworks Safety Act”.

"Please be considerate of your neighbors if you plan to set off fireworks,” said Northville Mayor Ken Roth, "Many residents are particularly sensitive to the noise from fireworks’ explosions. The noise carries for blocks and can be disturbing to many veterans, children, the elderly and even pets."

If you are buying fireworks, make sure the seller has a certification from the Dept. of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. See the LARA website for a list of sellers. Buyers must be 18 years or older.

Enjoy the fireworks in a safe setting
The Northville City Fire Department, which serves the Cities of Northville and Plymouth, urges residents who are using or viewing personal displays of fireworks to follow precautions for their own safety and to prevent fires.

“You really can’t be too careful when it comes to handling fireworks” said Fire Chief Steve Ott. “According to the National Fire Protection Association, fireworks were responsible for an estimated 15,600 fires in the U.S. during 2013, and in 2014, U.S. hospital emergency rooms saw an estimated 10,500 people for fireworks-related injuries.”

The Fire Department offers the following tips to help reduce the risk of fires and personal injury from fireworks:

  • Be observant of any fireworks you use and know where they are going. Watch for the debris and any fires that may result.
  • An adult should be present when fireworks are used. No child should be allowed to set off a firework.
  • Sparklers burn very hot. Don’t let a young child hold a sparkler.
  • Ignite fireworks away from any houses, garages or other structures that could catch fire if the firework or its residual flame landed on it.
  • Keep pets away from the area where fireworks are being launched.
  • Don’t light any fireworks inside any container, glass bottle or metal cylinders.
  • Don’t use fireworks near gasoline containers or around vehicles and equipment that contain gas.
  • Don’t light multiple fireworks at once.
  • Don’t hold a firework in your hand while lighting it.
  • Don’t look into a firework container to see why it didn’t go off.
  • Never try to re-light fireworks that don’t go off the first time.
  • Store fireworks in a cool, dry place away from any fuel containers or combustibles.
  • Keep a bucket of water or a ready-to-use garden hose nearby. Douse fireworks if embers remain.

Who to call for complaints on and around the holiday:
If you have questions or concerns about noise or unlawful use of fireworks, please contact the Northville Dispatch Center at 248-349-1234. If you see an injury or a fire caused by fireworks, please call 911. If using a cell phone, be prepared to report your location to the dispatcher.


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