FIREWORKS LAWS FOR VINCENNES

Immediate Press Release

June 26, 2019

Reference:  July 4th Holiday Celebrations and Fireworks

 

The Vincennes City Fire Department is constantly striving to keep the citizens of our community safe and informed.  With the upcoming July 4th holiday we would like to educate the public on the rules/law(s) pertaining to the safe discharge of consumer fireworks.  The upcoming holiday is one of celebration and remembrance and we wish to keep our public safe during our celebration of independence.

Always remember the following safety tips when interacting with fireworks:

  • Use extreme caution when lighting fireworks in the wind. Keep spectators where the wind is blowing smoke and debris away from them.
  • Never smoke or consume alcohol when lighting fireworks.
  • Store fireworks in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
  • Avoid others setting off fireworks as they can backfire or shoot off in the wrong direction.
  • Do not attempt to make or alter any fireworks or firework devices.
  • Always have a fire extinguisher or water supply, such as a hose or bucket of water, nearby.
  • Only light one firework at a time and never attempt to re-light or fix a “dud” firework.
  • Be considerate of individuals with PTSD and other types of medical conditions. The noise can cause severe stress and reaction in neighbors.
  • REMEMBER OUR PETS! Animals have sensitive ears and can be very frightened or stressed by the sounds and concussions of discharged fireworks.

Fireworks Laws:

  • Throughout the year it is legal to set off fireworks from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m., but this may be limited further by local ordinances. Citizens should check with local officials.
  • On state holidays it is legal to set off fireworks from 9 a.m. to midnight, but this may be limited further by local ordinances.
  • The times on the following dates are protected in Indiana for consumer use of fireworks and may not be prohibited by local ordinance:
  • June 29-July 3: from 5 p.m. until two hours after sunset;
  • July 4: from 10 a.m. to midnight;
  • July 5-July 9: from 5 p.m. until two hours after sunset; and
  • December 31: from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m.
  • Fireworks can only be purchased by persons 18 years of age or older.
  • Fireworks use is limited to personal property, the property of someone who has approved the use of fireworks or at a location designated specifically for the use of consumer fireworks by the authority having jurisdiction.

Local Ordinance:

  • 93.20  PURPOSE.

The purpose of this subchapter is to prevent the unauthorized use of fireworks which causes a public nuisance and adversely affects the city.

(Ord. 20-2014, passed 7-28-14)

  • 93.21  PROHIBITION OF FIREWORKS.

(A)   Pursuant to I.C. 22-11-14-10.5 a “fireworks use ordinance” means an ordinance that regulates any of the following:

(1)   The days and hours when consumer fireworks may be used, ignited, or discharged.

(2)   The locations where consumer fireworks may be used, ignited, or discharged.

(B)   Notwithstanding any other provision of this subchapter:

(1)   A county may adopt a fireworks use ordinance covering the unincorporated areas of the county; and

(2)   A municipality may adopt a fireworks use ordinance covering the area within the corporate limits of the municipality.

(C)   A fireworks use ordinance:

(1)   May limit the use of fireworks:

(a)   In the unincorporated areas of the county if adopted by a county; and

(b)   In the municipality if adopted by a municipality;

(2)   May not be more lenient than a rule adopted by a state agency concerning the use of fireworks; and

(3)   The city specifically permits fireworks use:

(a)   Between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and two hours after sunset on June 29, June 30, July 1, July 2, July 3, July 5, July 6, July 7, July 8 and July 9;

(b)   Between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 midnight on July 4; and

(c)   Between the hours of 10:00 a.m. on December 31 and 1:00 a.m. on January 1 and at other times by special permit.

(D)   The power to enforce a noise ordinance by a county or a municipality is not affected by the county’s or municipality’s action or lack of action under this section.

(Ord. 20-2014, passed 7-28-14)  Penalty, see § 93.99

  • 93.22  DEFINITIONS.

(A)   The terms CONSUMER FIREWORKS, SPECIAL FIREWORKS, and FIREWORKS shall have the same meaning as provided in I.C. 22-11-14-1, as amended.

(B)   The term BANNED FIREWORKS shall include all items listed in I.C. 22-1 l-14-8(a) as amended, or any other type of firework prohibited by federal, state or local law.

(Ord. 20-2014, passed 7-28-14)

  • 93.23  DISCHARGE PROHIBITED; EXCEPTION.

(A)   Except as provided below, it is unlawful for any person to ignite, shoot off, release, discharge, use or cause to be discharged, any fireworks and/or banned fireworks within the limits of the city, or to allow another to ignite, shoot off, release, discharge, use or cause to be discharged, any fireworks and/or banned fireworks on property owned or leased by them within the limits of the city.  Notwithstanding the preceding prohibition, use of consumer fireworks and/or special fireworks shall be allowed as set out in § 93.21(C)(3)(a), (b) and (c) and public displays where a permit is granted pursuant to I.C. 22-11-14-2 or 22-11-14-3.5 and such display occurs on the days and times permitted.  Should I.C. 22-11-14-10.5(c)(3) be amended to either expand or limit the number of days and/or hours that a municipality cannot limit the use of consumer fireworks, such change shall be incorporated by reference without need to amend this subchapter.

(B)   Consumer fireworks and/or special fireworks on other dates and times as may be permitted by the city Board of Works by special request.

(Ord. 20-2014, passed 7-28-14)  Penalty, see § 93.99

  • 93.24  TIMES.

The city prohibits the use of fireworks within the corporate limits of the city at all times, dates and places other than those specific times set forth in § 93.21.  Fireworks are defined by I.C. 22-11-14-1 and 22-11-14-8.  This subchapter does not prohibit the use of the following items at other times so long as they do not disturb the peace.

(A)   Items that are hand held (i.e. sparklers);

(B)   Items that are used on the ground (i.e. ground spinners, cones, fountains);

(C)   Novelty items (i.e. snakes, party poppers); and

(D)   Non-novelty items (i.e. spinning wheels, roman candles).

(Ord. 20-2014, passed 7-28-14)

  • 93.25  NUISANCE; UNSAFE USE; PUBLIC/PRIVATE PROPERTY.

(A)   Use or discharge of consumer fireworks, special fireworks or banned fireworks can cause serious annoyance to citizens by loud, frequent or habitual noise, and is declared to be a public nuisance. Except as noted in § 93.21, it is unlawful for any person to conduct such activities.

(B)   The use of consumer fireworks, special fireworks or banned fireworks in an unsafe manner or in a way that results in the littering of public and/or private property is also considered a public nuisance.

(C)   Except by specific permission granted by the Vincennes Board of Public Works and Safety, it shall be illegal to use consumer fireworks or banned fireworks on public property or to use consumer fireworks, special fireworks or banned fireworks in such a manner that is reasonably likely that remnants of the consumer fireworks, special fireworks or banned fireworks will land on, litter or otherwise end up on: public property, or private property, unless the private property owner has consented and such act does not violate any other provision of this subchapter.

(Ord. 20-2014, passed 7-28-14)  Penalty, see § 93.99

  • 93.26  PARENTAL RESPONSIBILITY.

It shall be unlawful for anyone under the age of 18 (“minor”) to ignite, shoot off, release, discharge, use or cause to be discharged any consumer fireworks, special fireworks or banned fireworks within the limits of the city without the direct supervision of the minor’s parent, guardian or other adult person having the care, custody and control of the minor.

(Ord. 20-2014, passed 7-28-14)  Penalty, see § 93.99

  • 93.27  LIABILITY FOR FIRE AND OTHER DAMAGE.

 

Miscellaneous Information:

The following firework statistics are taken from the Indiana State Department of Health’s 2017 Indiana Firework-Related Injury Report:

  • In 2017, 77 percent of all reported firework injuries occurred from July1-7, and 39.5 percent of all firework injuries occurred on July 4.
  • More than one-third of all reported firework-related injuries were to hands or fingers.
  • Eye injuries accounted for 11.7 percent of the total number of injuries.
  • 49 percent of the injuries were caused by firecrackers, rockets and sparklers.
  • Firework use on private property accounted for 61.3 percent of reported cases.

 

Yours in safety of life and property

 

Sonny Pinkstaff

Fire Chief

Vincennes Fire Department