With the approach of the July 4th holiday and due to a significant uptick in illegal fireworks complaints, the Marion Police Department wishes to proactively remind residents that the use of 1G fireworks (inclusive of firecrackers, bottle rockets, etc.) is illegal according to Ohio Revised Code section 3743.65 (B).
“Many Ohio residents find it confusing that you can legally purchase these fireworks in Ohio but it is illegal to set them off in Ohio,” said Marion Police Chief Bill Collins. Chief Collins added that residents who purchase 1G fireworks in the State of Ohio are required by law to take the fireworks out of the State of Ohio within 48 hours of purchase.
Quick Facts According to the 2018 Consumer Product Safety Commission Fireworks Annual Report-
-There were 121 non-occupational fireworks related deaths between 2003 and 2018
-9,100 people were injured due to fireworks related incidents in 2018.
-Between June 22nd and July 22nd of 2018, there were 5,600 emergency room visits related to fireworks.
-Children 15 and younger accounted for 37% of Emergency Room visits.
Fireworks, particularly in the hands of untrained persons pose multiple safety risks to the person using the fireworks, but also to others nearby. Numerous injuries are caused by malfunctioning or improperly altered fireworks which can often result in unintended explosions of a serious nature. The consumption of alcohol or use of drugs while handling fireworks significantly increases the risk of injury and/or death. Additionally, fireworks pose a fire hazard to nearby areas, particularly during dry spells with infrequent rains.
Chief Collins also points out that beyond the dangers of fireworks, they also cause an unwelcome noise disturbance for many who live in our community. Chief Collins states, “We hear from our complainants that they have dogs that are agitated and disturbed. Some have loved ones with PTS (post-traumatic stress) who indicate that the sudden and loud noises can be a triggering event for them. Others simply complain that they need to work in the morning and the sound disturbs their sleep”.
Regardless of their motivation, the simple reality is that 1G fireworks as defined by the Ohio Revised Code are both dangerous and illegal. As a result, the Marion Police Department will actively enforce all relevant sections of Ohio law and Marion City Ordinance relating to the illegal possession or lighting of illegal fireworks.
This educational release should serve as the only warning that will be issued relative to the use of illegal fireworks in the City of Marion. Those charged with a first offense fireworks violation are subject to a First-Degree Misdemeanor charge which carries a $1,000 fine, up to six months in jail and the confiscation of any contraband fireworks.
For more information relating to fireworks in the State of Ohio, please visit the Ohio Department of Commerce/ State Fire Marshal FAQ page at https://www.com.ohio.gov/fire/FAQ.aspx.