Friday, June 27, 2014

Fireworks: What You Need to Know and a List of Public Displays

The Fourth of July is right around the corner and Montgomery County Fire Chief Steve Lohr is reminding residents that ALL fireworks are illegal in Montgomery County and that the County will be continuing its
‘zero tolerance’ policy regarding illegal fireworks.

As you prepare to celebrate Independence Day with family picnics, outings to the beach and neighborhood barbecues, take steps to prevent these festivities from turning into tragedies. Each Fourth of July, hundreds of children are permanently disfigured due to burns by fireworks. Here's what you should know:

  • Each year, fireworks in the United States cause approximately twelve deaths, 2000 serious eye injuries, and 5000 other injuries (including amputated fingers). 
  • Although many people mistakenly believe that sparklers are safe, sparklers burn at 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit (nearly hot enough to melt gold)! 
  • In Montgomery County, all fireworks are illegal to possess or discharge including gold label sparklers. 
  • Snap-and-pop noise makers, snakes, and party poppers are the only exception to this law. 
Maryland's Fireworks Laws:

  • Fireworks include any firecracker, skyrocket, or Roman candle. Toy caps are only permitted if the explosive content is under .25 grains and they are designed so the hand cannot come in contact with the cap when in use. 
  • In Maryland, private use and possession of fireworks, including sparklers, is illegal and carries a $500 fine. 
  • It is against the law to sell fireworks in Maryland, and carries a $1,000 fine. 
  • Public fireworks displays require proper permits and insurance. 
Where can I go in Montgomery County to see the fireworks?

The Fire Chief and safety experts agree that the best way to celebrate is to enjoy one of the many free, public fireworks displays in the area on July 4th.  Below is a list of public displays that we are aware of:

Germantown Glory at the Maryland SoccerPlex in the South Germantown Recreational Park, 18041 Central Park Circle, Germantown

Mid-County Sparkles at Albert Einstein High School, 11135 Newport Road, Kensington. Both fireworks displays will begin at approximately 9:15 p.m.

Rockville's Independence Day Celebration is at Montgomery College - Rockville Campus located at 51 Mannakee Street.

Takoma Park 125th Celebration - Takoma Park Middle School 7611 Piney Branch Rd

City of Gaithersburg Celebration - Montgomery County Fairgrounds located at 16 Chestnut Street in Gaithersburg. 

Town of Poolesville - Poolesville Polo Grounds, 14660 Hughes Rd., Poolesville, Maryland.

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