News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local & Bistate

July 1, 2014

Indiana fire marshal cautions on fireworks

The Indiana State Fire Marshal is encouraging Hoosiers who plan to celebrate Independence Day with fireworks to know the law before they light a fuse.

According to a press release, Indiana’s fireworks laws can be found in Indiana Code 22-11-14, which covers when, where and who can discharge fireworks.

“Fireworks are a holiday tradition for many Hoosier families on the Fourth of July,” said Indiana State Fire Marshal Jim Greeson. “Indiana’s fireworks laws were created to help protect families and communities from the danger fireworks can present if not used properly.”

• Where can fireworks be legally discharged?

Fireworks may be discharged on the user’s property, the property of someone who has granted permission or at locally approved special discharge locations. Those setting off fireworks are responsible for any property damaged by their fireworks even if they were discharged from a legal location. Keep that in mind when using bottle rockets, roman candles or any other aerial fireworks.

•  When can fireworks be used?

According to state law, fireworks may be discharged between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. on most days other than holidays. On holidays (Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day and New Year’s Eve) they can be discharged until midnight. On June 29-30, July 1-3 and 5-9, fireworks can be discharged until two hours past sunset.

Communities in Indiana may have ordinances in place that further restrict the days and hours upon which fireworks can be used. Contact local fire departments or local officials to find out what the restrictions are.

•  Who can use fireworks?

Fireworks can be purchased only by persons 18 years of age and older. Children may possess or use fireworks only when an adult is present and is responsible for the child’s conduct. A person younger than 18 who possesses or uses fireworks without an adult present is committing a class-C infraction, under state law.

•  What could happen if fireworks laws are violated?

Persons who use fireworks at any place other than their own property, someone else’s property with proper permission or at a special discharge location, may face up to a $500 fine.

Recklessly, knowingly or intentionally using fireworks that harm someone else is a criminal offense that may result in six months to three years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000.

Recklessly, knowingly or intentionally using fireworks that causes damage to someone else’s property is a criminal offense that may result in one year in prison and a maximum fine of $5,000.

The fire marshal asks citizens to contact local law enforcement to report someone violating fireworks laws.

For more information about fireworks safety and fireworks laws, visit Get

Prepared.IN.gov.

 

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