Fireworks Laws

Criminal Defense for Fireworks Violations
Fireworks in California are regulated by both state and local law. State law defines legal and illegal fireworks and specifies dates when consumer fireworks may be sold. Cities and counties have the discretion to impose more restrictive ordinances, including declaring an outright ban on sale and use. As such, it's important to be aware of both the state and local laws before buying or using any fireworks. If you've been charged with illegal possession or use of fireworks, call me at (916) 442-1200 to discuss your case.

Statewide Laws
California's laws regarding firework sale and use are extensive and detailed. Here's an overview of the provisions:
  • The State Fire Marshall determines which fireworks qualify as consumer products. These "safe and sane" fireworks may be sold only between June 28 and July 6 each year. State law does not limit, however, when consumer fireworks may be used.
  • California Health and Safety Code Section 12505 provides a detailed list of the fireworks components and products that may not be sold to the general public. These include:
    • Skyrockets, roman candles, firecrackers, large sparklers, and chasers
    • Any firework that uses zirconium, magnesium, arsenic sulfide or a number of other chemicals considered dangerous
    • Any firework deemed by the State Fire Marshall as unsafe for use by people who lack required special training. This includes fireworks used in public shows like the ones put on at amusement parks or at Cal Expo on the Fourth of July.
Keep in mind that the mere possession of these fireworks products is considered illegal and carries the possibility of fines and/ or jail time.
City and County Ordinances
Many local governments, particularly those in areas subject to brush and forest fires, impose more strict guidelines on the sale and use of consumer fireworks. The Sacramento region's many cities and counties each has different rules, with some localities permitting fireworks use and some imposing outright bans. For example, consumer fireworks are illegal in Placer County's unincorporated areas though they may be sold and used in Roseville. El Dorado County bans fireworks as well. The City of Sacramento allows consumer fireworks to be used, but only between June 28 and July 4.

Free and Confidential Consultation
If you're facing criminal charges for using fireworks, call me at (916) 442-1200 for a free and confidential consultation.