Just wanted to hear some feedback on "Fireworks" in regards to Fire or EMS calls in States they are Legal? I was also looking for the same feedback to the states were "Fireworks" are not legal? I am talking about firecrackers and bottle rockets, roman candels and such, but to include sparkler's. Up here in Maine they have just past a bill to allow "fireworks" that will go into effect in January. There has been some talk from the Fire Marshals and some Fire Chiefs concerned about an increase of call and injuries. Speaking from experiences I have gone on a lot of EMS calls for people blowing their finger off trying to make there own "fireworks" from something they saw on You Tube only a couple of fire calls. Just wanted all of you to show both sides of the arena. Thank's Ladies and Gentleman
The non flying type fireworks, that make noise shower sparks etc. are legal in VA, however the individual counties and localities have the right to have more strict rules. For example the county I work for bans all types of fire works even down to the sparklers. The only person who can use fire works in the county is a licensed professional and professional fire work shows and companies...not fireworks at your BBQ, or picnic, no sparklers at nite nothing.
The only significant call increase we see during this time is smoke in the area or brush fires...the EMS call load is heavy any ways and it stays that way.
Legal or not, the issue comes down to enforcement and effectiveness. For the most part it doesn't matter if fireworks are considered legal or not, it really doesn't stop people from using them. In most cases there is just not enough staffing, be it fire nor police, to really do any effective enforcement discouraging the use of fireworks.
Another aspect is when it comes to possession vs use. In some cases like WI, one couldn't even possess certain fireworks like bottle rockets, roman candles etc. That law has changed and it comes down to a matter of use. For awhile you couldn't find a fireworks shop selling any firework that would leave the ground, now there are many. However, local ordinaces do affect the use of such fireworks and the limits and uses involved, which means anyone can have certain fireworks, but are limited in how they can set them off.
What it boils down to is there are many fireworks being lit off all the time and many, many people violating the law. The issue is that in order to enforce, the person would have to be witnesses lighting off by enforcement, which again is limited. You will always find people who won't care about the laws and there are only so many resources to go around to really do any effective enforcement.
I guess in the end, making fireworks "legal" still depends. As I mentioned, there will always be those who don't care about the laws and those who won't get caught, but in the end I do think that allowing the use for anyone is worse than easing some laws now. In the end I don't think you would see things truly being "legal" and there will still be some ordinances in place. Besides, many times it is neighbors enforcing such things and only taking so much in form of noise, etc. So it doesn't matter if every firework was "legal" there tends to be other ordinces that would trump the use of fireworks.
That's a rather narrow point of view, "I understand states like Texas banning them because they may start bushfires, but other than that they should be legal for adults." What about Arizona, Nevada, the New Jersey Pine Barrens or practically any non-urban area? Or have I somehow missed something and Texas is the ONLY state that burns? I can tell you from experience that even here in Connecticut (only fractionally as urbanized as most people seem to think) we get brush fires.
"There's no reason for nanny-laws."
Federal speed limits
Local speed limits
Mandatory seat belt laws
Mandatory child seat laws
Hands-free cell phone use only
State liquor sales laws (open, close, hours)
Mandatory automobile insurance laws
A child pretty much instinctively trusts his or her parents. So when dad says, "here, you light the fuse on this one," the child naturally assumes it's safe. Right up until the time the fuse burns faster than it was supposed to have, the firecracker blows up and takes off a finger or takes out an eye of the child. All because dad said it was safe.
So even though (some, certain?) 'nanny laws' seem to suck all of the fun out of things (speeding down the road while yakking on your cell phone, the kids in the back seat bouncing around unencumbered by seat belts or child seats), in the end they are pretty much designed to protect innocent people from the stupidity of others.
The above being said, I'm all in favor of allowing people to do things, however dangerous or stupid, so long as they are the only ones at risk. There's a category for that, I believe it's called the Darwin Awards.
They are legal here in SC and in over 20 years of service I have yet to run any major injuries caused by fireworks. A few small burns, etc. maybe...but yet to see any disfigured or missing digits/limbs. I'm sure it happens, but IMO it's more of a "boogeyman" being thrown out there than anything.
Yes, we have more brush, grass, and even structure fires because of them....especially if it's dry outside, but if you plan ahead like you should be doing anytime a situation arises that presents a good chance of high call volume it really isn't a problem.