The fourth of July is around the corner and people are getting ready to celebrate our independence in the most traditional way, a booming firework display!
Our early settlers brought fireworks from Europe to the United States. They have been used since the very first Independence Day to celebrate and are still used today.
Fireworks are not only fun for entertainment they also are a big money maker. Firework laws are done state by state but what most states have figured out is that firework sales bring in extra tax dollars that help the state.
In Georgia, firework taxes are at 5% and the money goes towards fire protection service, public safety, and trauma care
Preparing for the Fourth of July
In the United States, it is a tradition for families to gather together for barbeques and summer fun to celebrate the Fourth of July. No Fourth of July party is complete without some sparklers and fireworks!
Although this sounds like a fun carefree celebration there are a lot of rules you need to know and follow to keep you and your family safe and legal.
Georgia has made some changes to a few different laws that will be taken into effect July 1, 2018. Fireworks laws are one of the topics that have been addressed.
In Georgia, there are two firework options that are decided on by each county so always be sure to check with your local authorities.
Here is what the two legal options for fireworks are:
- Between 10 a.m. and 11:59 pm you may use fireworks unless it violates a noise ordinance that would alter these hours.
- The use of fireworks is legal until 11:59 on certain holiday regardless of the local legislation. The holiday these include are:
- Memorial Day
- Independence Day
- Labor Day
- New Year’s Eve
When there is a drought, fireworks are banned no matter what.
You want to make sure you are aware of your area and do not use fireworks when your lawn is dry even if there isn’t a statewide drought.
Firework Safety Tips
- Keep children away from the area where the fireworks are being lite
- Do not handle fireworks while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Sock used fireworks in water before throwing them in the garbage
- Keep water close by when lighting fireworks
- Back up from firework after you lite it
- Do not relight a failed firework also known as a dud
- Never point a firework at a person
- Do not hold a lite firework in your hands
- Do not keep every firework close by the igniting area
- It is always best for a sober adult to handle the fireworks
Know your Firework Laws
It is illegal to:
- Buy fireworks under the age of 18
- Lighting fireworks within 100 years from certain facilities (such as jails and nursing homes)
- Use fireworks under the influence of drug or alcohol
Fireworks are legal to buy in the state of Georgia for those who are 18 years or older. Here is a list of different types of fireworks that can be legally bought in retail stores in the state of Georgia:
- Bottle Rockets
- Sky Rockets
- Roman Candles
- Smoke and Punk
- Crackle and Strobe
- Wheels and Spinners
- Sky Flyers
- Display Shells
- Aerial Items
Who is responsible for firework injuries?
This is definitely a case by case topic. If you attend a large firework event put on by the city or a company then the sponsor is responsible for the safety of everyone who is there. Whoever is the promoter of the event is who is held responsible.
If you are injured by a person lighting off fireworks at their home and you are a guest or nearby and sustain injuries then it would be due to someone negligence and they would need to be held responsible.
If you are lighting a firework and it does not work properly then that would be seen as a manufacturing error.
What to do if you have been injured by Fireworks
If you have been injured in a firework accident contact The Brown Firm. Our personal injury attorneys are here to help make sure you are taken care of properly. Firework injuries can be permanent and seriously impact your life.
Make sure the negligent person is held accountable for their careless actions.
Getting hurt is enough stress figuring out how to pay for it and move on from your injuries can be overwhelming so don’t go at it alone, contact professional help.