From barbeques and pool parties to picnics and trips to the beach/lake, millions of Americans will celebrate Independence Day in some form. In most occasions, fireworks are included in the festivities.
However, if you are interested in setting off fireworks on the Fourth of July in Fort Lauderdale, you first need to understand the Florida fireworks laws.
In general, the only legal fireworks are categorized as “sparklers,” which include sparklers, fountains, snakes, glow worms, snaps, and smoke bombs. These are devices that emit a shower of sparks once ignited and do not explode, detonate, fly, and contain more than 100 grams of chemical compounds.
The following are illegal fireworks, according to Florida law:
- Roman candles
- Daygo bombs
- Large sparklers
- Any fireworks that contain flammable or explosive chemical compounds
While it is illegal to possess and use any of the fireworks mentioned above, they are still sold in retail stores and fireworks stands throughout the state. Besides selling fireworks for military events, sports events, or other licensed demonstrations, there is an exception in the law that allows retailers to sell fireworks for agricultural reasons—specifically to frighten birds.
All these retailers must do is make you sign a waiver before selling you illegal fireworks. However, if you read the waiver carefully, you will learn that you’re stating you intend to use the fireworks for an approved cause.
So, while the store is off the hook, you aren’t. Possession and/or use of illegal fireworks is a misdemeanor crime in Florida, which carries a maximum one-year jail term and a fine no more than $1,000.
At Hager & Schwartz, P.A., we suggest you watch a public demonstration, instead of setting off fireworks at your home or in a public area. Our legal team wishes you a fun and safe Independence Day!
If you have been charged with a crime in Fort Lauderdale, contact us at (954) 840-8713 and schedule a free consultation today.