New Fireworks Regulations 2019: Learn the Law

As we enjoy longer hours of daylight every day, we can take solace in knowing that summer is on its way. And that means it is not too soon to remind residents that the City of University Place new fireworks ordinance goes into effect this year.

As of Jan. 1, 2019, legal fireworks can only be discharged in the City of U.P. from 9 a.m. to midnight on July 4. Legal fireworks are defined as sparklers, cones and fountains, smokes and novelties.

Police Chief Mike Blair will give the first of what will be several presentations to the City Council on May 6 to remind everyone of the new ordinance. The City’s latest episode of “UP Responds” is focused on the issue of fireworks regulations and safety. It includes an informative interview with West Pierce Fire & Rescue Battalion Chief Scott Adams.

State law requires that any revisions to fireworks regulations NOT take effect for one year. The City Council made revisions to the fireworks ordinance in 2017. The City encourages anyone with questions about the discharge of legal fireworks to review the regulations by visiting the City’s website at CityofUP.com. The best way to ensure that only legal fireworks are discharged is to simply purchase them in University Place and ONLY discharge on the Fourth of July between 9 a.m. and 12 midnight.  

“Take some time to understand what your neighbors are doing for the fourth so you know what to expect.  Manage expectations as fireworks are legal to discharge until 12 o’clock midnight even if you want to go to bed earlier.  Only use 911 or 252.798.4721 (24 hour non-emergency numbers) to report emergencies and illegal fireworks usage while keeping in mind that this is SS911’s largest call volume day of the year.  For many, it is an alcohol infused celebration and there are assaults and in-progress crimes that take priority.”

“We have talked about this issue for several years, but this is the year when it becomes law,” said Chief Blair. “We encourage anyone with questions about the discharge of legal fireworks to review the regulations or contact us. We want everyone to be on the same page and understand the right—and safe—way to celebrate the Fourth of July in U.P.”

View the Fireworks Ordinances for more information.