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fireworks laws

Laws regarding the sale, storage, and use of fireworks vary from state to state, but it is often illegal to:

• advertise to sell or transfer fireworks without a license or permit to do so, or with an expired license to do so;

• advertise that you are in the fireworks business without a license or permit to do so;

• sell or deliver fireworks to minors, or to persons under the age permitted by law (16 years of age, for example, and 18 years of age for dangerous fireworks);

• buy fireworks if you are under the legal age (16 years of age, for example, and 18 years of age for dangerous fireworks);

• sell fireworks anywhere other than a fixed, licensed place of business;

• sell, give, or transfer special effects fireworks to a person who does not have a pyrotechnic license;

• sell or offer to sell fireworks outside of permitted time periods—such as June and July, December and January;

• store fireworks once your license has expired, been revoked, or is surrendered;

• allow a fire nuisance (anything that causes or tends to cause an increase of fire danger) to exist in a place where fireworks are sold, manufactured, assembled, packaged, stored, or distributed;

• fail to record a license number on fireworks sales or shipments;

• use special effects fireworks (manufactured, designed, assembled, or used in connection with television, movies, or theater) without a pyrotechnic license.

• discharge fireworks within city limits without a license or permit;

• store, sell, or discharge fireworks near a gas station or other place where flammable liquids, flammable compressed gasses, or fireworks are sold or stored;

• discharge fireworks near a church, hospital, day-care center or school;

• discharge bottle rockets or pop rockets;

• possess dangerous fireworks without a permit;

• conduct a public display of fireworks without a permit;

• give, deliver, or sell dangerous fireworks to someone without a permit;

• discharge fireworks where they are likely to harm another person, or with the intent to cause chaos, fear or panic;

• possess or discharge agricultural or wildlife fireworks without a permit (fireworks devices designed to prevent crop damage or unwanted animals, and distributed to farmers, ranchers, and growers through a wildlife management program administered by the United States Department of the Interior or an equivalent state or local governmental agency).

• discharge fireworks from a public roadway, public property, park, lake or U.S. Army Corps of Engineers property;

• sell, use, or discharge an emergency signaling device (a flare) that has not been registered with the state fire marshal;

• use an emergency signaling device (a flare) in an unintended manner;

• discharge fireworks on property you do not own without written permission from the property owner;

• discharge fireworks in violation of a local, county, or statewide burn ban.

In addition to state laws located in state statutes (often in the health and safety code, occupations code, or penal or criminal code), cities and counties often have ordinances and regulations that restrict the possession, sale, and discharge of fireworks. Violations of fireworks laws may be prosecuted as a misdemeanor or as a felony, and sometimes include jail time for possession of large amounts of dangerous fireworks, for example.

In Texas, the sale, storage, and use of fireworks are regulated by state law, primarily under the Texas Occupations Code and the Health and Safety Code. It is illegal to sell or advertise fireworks without the appropriate license or permit, or with an expired license. Only licensed businesses can sell fireworks, and sales are restricted to certain periods, typically around New Year's and Independence Day. It is also illegal to sell or deliver fireworks to minors (under 16 for common fireworks, under 18 for more dangerous ones), or to sell special effects fireworks to someone without a pyrotechnic license. Fireworks cannot be discharged within city limits without a permit, near certain buildings like churches or hospitals, or in proximity to flammable substances. Bottle rockets and similar fireworks are prohibited. Public displays of fireworks require a permit, and it is illegal to discharge fireworks on someone else's property without their written permission. Local ordinances may impose additional restrictions, and violations can result in misdemeanor or felony charges, with potential jail time for serious offenses such as possession of large quantities of dangerous fireworks.

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