Amateur fireworks ban continues on sale, use

Violators subject to $513 minimum fine

Brian Schaeffer, Assistant Fire Chief, 509.625.7002

Monday, June 29, 2015 at 12:30 p.m.

Approaching the July 4th holiday, Spokane Fire Department reminds everyone that the selling and use of all amateur fireworks is illegal in the cities of Spokane, Spokane Valley, Cheney, Millwood, Liberty Lake and the unincorporated areas of Spokane County.

This marks the 23rd year in which all consumer fireworks are illegal. Individuals lighting consumer fireworks are subject to the minimum of a $513 fine. Violations of the fireworks ban should be reported to Crime Check at 456.2233.

The fireworks ban in Spokane has worked. Based on the number of fireworks-caused fires between 1983 and 1992, the fireworks ban has prevented an estimated 2,178 fires. In the 10 years prior to the fireworks ordinance in 1993, Spokane firefighters responded to an average of 104 fireworks-caused fires just in the City of Spokane during the nine-day period between June 28 and July 6. During the past 22 years of the ban, the average number of fireworks-caused fires has dramatically dropped to five. Prior to the ban, there were so many fireworks-caused fires around July 4 that some emergency medical calls to 9-1-1 had to be stacked until first responders could be dispatched.

With the dry conditions currently in our region, it is particularly important for everyone to respect the fireworks ordinance this year.

In addition to the number of fires and injuries caused by amateur fireworks each year throughout the U.S., there is a very negative impact from fireworks noise on veterans suffering from PTSD, on neighbors, and on pets.

Spokane Fire Department thanks the community for celebrating Independence Day without using individual fireworks. Everyone is invited to the community display provided the night of July 4th by licensed pyro technicians at Riverfront Park or at Liberty Lake in Pavilion Park.