Firework Safety Information
Safe-N-Sane fireworks are approved for sale by nonprofit organizations and can be used legally by the public from June 28, until 11:59 p.m. on July 4. Because of the unusually high amount of vegetation this year and the high fire danger, fire officials are urging the public to use extreme caution when using fireworks and follow some simple safety rules.
Safe-N-Sane fireworks are those that have been tested and approved by valley fire departments for use during this one week of the year. At all other times of the year, Safe-N-Sane fireworks are illegal as well as any other type of firework that flies through the air, explodes or rotates on the ground. On the morning of June 28, more than 150 fireworks booths inside the city of Las Vegas will have to stock up on approved Safe-N-Sane fireworks and be inspected by a fire inspector from Las Vegas Fire & Rescue before they can open to the public. All fireworks booths must have a permit and be inspected to operate within the city. In the past, some illegal booths were found to be in business. These booths were shut down, their fireworks confiscated and citations issued.
Illegal fireworks can be very dangerous as they fly through the air, explode or rotate on the ground. As a result, you have no control over them and they can wind up in an area where a fire can occur. Illegal fireworks are usually sold outside Clark County and on the Indian Reservation. Those purchased on the Indian Reservation are expected to be used on the reservation at a specially-designated area and not off the property. Using them anywhere else in Clark County is illegal.
Although they are labeled Safe-N-Sane fireworks, some people have the impression that they are toys and children can “play with them.” Safe-N-Sane fireworks can cause injury to people and are capable of starting large fires. A number of significant fires in the valley have been started because of the use of Safe-N-Sane fireworks.
The user still must exercise extreme caution when using Safe-N-Sane fireworks. Here are some safety tips:
- Fireworks should be used on a flat, firm surface such as the ground or a driveway. Fireworks are illegal on the street and sidewalk.
- Stay away from bushes, grass and trees, or anything else that might catch fire. Stay away from vehicles.
- Have a bucket of water and/or garden hose available for use in case of fire.
- There should be a responsible adult present when fireworks are being used.
- After the firework has been used, it should be picked up with a shovel, dropped into a bucket of water and left to soak for several hours before being discarded in the trash.
- “Duds” or fireworks that did not go off after being lit should be picked up with a shovel and dropped into a bucket of water. You should not try to relight it.
- If a fire does start because of fireworks, don’t panic. Use the garden hose or bucket of water to put the fire out or prevent it from getting larger. Call 9-1-1 for emergency assistance.
- Fireworks should never be used in a building.
- Any type of firework, including Safe-N-Sane fireworks, is illegal at midnight on July 5.
- Fireworks are illegal at all times on streets, city property, school district property and in any park.
- Fireworks are not permitted on federal property, which includes all parks and recreational areas such as Lake Mead, Mount Charleston, Spring Mountains and Red Rock. There is an extreme danger of fire in the parklands and people caught using fireworks can face an extremely stiff penalty.
Here are some safety precautions that homeowners can take to protect their property:
- Clean your yard of any unnecessary weeds or plant growth. Cut grass and keep watered. Green plants are less likely to burn.
- Remove dead palm tree fronds. These can burn very rapidly and cause burning embers which can spread over a wide area causing other fires.
- Clean any accumulated dead leaves, pine needles and other dead growth and dispose of properly.
- Keep a garden hose connected and ready to use in case a fire starts in your yard, even if you are not using fireworks. If you do not have a garden hose to use, a bucket of water on stand-by is a good back up.
- Keep pets inside in the evening, especially on the Fourth of July.
- Keep vehicles that are parked at home locked up and all windows shut. Park in a garage or under a canopy if available.
- Check your property several times during the evening if fireworks are being used in your area. Many times a fire can be detected while it is small and prevented from getting larger.
To report illegal firework activity, dial 3-1-1. Do not call 9-1-1 except to report an emergency such as a building on fire or medical emergency.
More information about firework rules, regulations and safety can be found at http://www.fpanevada.org/ or by calling Las Vegas Fire & Rescue at (702) 383-2888.