Fireworks safety tips, rules

The Honolulu Fire Dept. is providing important tips to help the public stay safe and enjoy the Independence Day holiday.

Improper use of fireworks can cause severe injuries and presents a significant risk of starting fires.

While novelty fireworks are allowed on neighbor islands, only firecrackers can be used on Oahu. HFD says 74 permits were issued this year.

Fireworks Safety Tips:

  • Use only approved fireworks from a licensed retail outlet that posts its retail license.
  • Always read and follow warnings and instructions listed by the manufacturer to ensure the safe handling and use of fireworks.
  • Never point or throw fireworks at a person, building, or animal.
  • Never ignite fireworks indoors. Ensure your outdoor area is safe for fireworks use.
  • Fireworks should only be lighted on a smooth, flat surface away from buildings, dry vegetation, and flammable materials.
  • Do not string fireworks on utility poles.
  • Keep any type of ladder, pole, or tie lines used to set up fireworks at least ten feet from power lines.
  • Never ignite fireworks in metal or glass containers.
  • Have a garden hose or a bucket of water ready in the event of a fire.
  • Fireworks must not be used by persons under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • Always wear eye protection when lighting fireworks.
  • When lighting fireworks, never position any part of your body over them.
  • Never attempt to reignite malfunctioning fireworks.
  • Store fireworks in a cool, dry place.
  • Never carry fireworks in your pocket.
  • Never experiment with homemade fireworks, as they are dangerous and illegal.

The following rules and regulations apply to the City and County of Honolulu.

It is unlawful for any person to:

  • Throw ignited fireworks at a person or an animal.
  • Throw ignited fireworks from above the first floor of any building.
  • Throw ignited fireworks from, at, or into a vehicle.
  • Set off fireworks on public ways, in parks, cane fields, or places of worship.
  • Set off fireworks on public beaches or in forest or wildlife preserves.
  • Set off fireworks in school buildings or on school grounds.
  • Set off fireworks within 1,000 feet of hospitals, health and elderly care facilities, and facilities for animal care, including the zoo.
  • Set off fireworks within 500 feet from a hotel.
  • Offer for sale, sell, or give any fireworks to minors. Honolulu’s fireworks ordinance makes it illegal for minors to use firecrackers in Honolulu, even with adult supervision.
  • Possess or use aerial fireworks, unless the Fire Chief of the HFD issues a display permit per Chapter 132D, Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS).
  • Transport fireworks in carry-on or checked luggage, airline cargo, or mail.
  • Remove or extract pyrotechnic contents.

Firecracker permits for the Independence Day holiday are no longer available on Oahu, as Honolulu’s fireworks ordinance requires that permits be obtained no less than 10 days prior to its use. Firecrackers may be sold to those with permits from Sunday, June 29, 2014, at 12:01 a.m. to Friday, July 4, 2014, at 8 p.m. They may be set off on July 4, 2014, between 1 and 9 p.m.

While firecracker permits for the Independence Day holiday are no longer available, consumers may obtain firecracker permits for New Year’s Eve until Friday, December 19, 2014.

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