Effective this July 1st, the State of Georgia has legalized many types of fireworks that were previously against the law. Residents were previously only able to purchase smaller items such as sparklers and smoke bombs. Under the new law, fireworks that shoot in the air, explode, or launch can now be purchased and used within the state. Proponents of the change in the law hope that the five percent excise tax that will be imposed will serve as increased revenue for the state in addition to allowing Georgia residents to enjoy the new fireworks.
9 Rules for Staying Safe When Using Fireworks
While the new law allows for the purchase and use of many types of fireworks in Georgia, there are still some limitations that residents should be aware of. For example, fireworks cannot be used on public property without a permit. Consumers must be at least 18 years old to purchase fireworks. Further, to sell fireworks, proprietors must pay a $5,000 licensing fee. This fee will go towards a public safety campaign.
Staying safe when using fireworks is crucial now that these products are more readily available. Georgians can follow the tips below to help ensure they stay safe while having fun with fireworks this summer:
- When using fireworks, always keep water nearby in the event that a fire needs to be put out quickly.
- Transport and store fireworks carefully and in accordance with the product’s instructions.
- Use caution when lighting the fuse on a firework. It is important to position your body so that you are not leaning directly over it. It is also important to make sure that the firework is not aimed in the direction of any other individual.
- Do not light fireworks from inside a metal or glass container.
- After lighting the firework, quickly back up to a safe distance.
- Purchase only fireworks designed for consumer use, rather than those sold for use in professional displays.
- Fireworks should only be handled by adults. This even includes sparklers, which can burn at temperatures as high as 2,000 degrees.
- If a firework does not fully ignite, do not attempt to re-ignite it.
- Before throwing away a firework, wet it with water to ensure that a trash fire is not inadvertently started.
With the new law taking effect shortly, we encourage you to share these important tips with your friends and loved ones on Facebook and Twitter today!