Pennsylvania – Fireworks sales are expected to be sky-high for Independence Day in Pennsylvania after state laws relaxed late last year, allowing Pennsylvanians to buy and use any fireworks that comply with federal requirements.
This means that any Pennsylvanian 18 and older can now purchase and use “Class C” or “consumer-grade” fireworks. This includes firecrackers, Roman Candles, bottle rockets, and other fireworks that contain up to 50 milligrams of explosive material at any licensed facility, including temporary ones.
However, this still excludes the larger “display fireworks.” Only professionals with a permit from the municipality where they will be setting off the fireworks are allowed to use anything containing more than 130 milligrams of explosive materials or any aerial shells containing more than 60 grams of pyrotechnic compositions.
The law was enacted in October of 2017 as part of a budget package that reduced the deficit by including a new 12 percent tax on fireworks. This is in addition to the already 6 percent sales tax in PA, which means anyone buying fireworks can expect to pay a total of 18 percent tax on their purchases.
This is the first 4th of July in Pennsylvania with the new rules.
Even though state laws have changed, the laws in your local borough or municipality have likely not changed. Contact your local office to learn the rules on exactly when and where you can set off fireworks.
As always, you need to be responsible and careful anytime you’re handling fireworks.
- Only allow adults to light fireworks, and make sure kids are being carefully watched at all times.
- Alcohol and explosives don’t mix. Never set off fireworks when under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Only light a firework when you’re ready to use it.
- Never smoke around fireworks.
- Read the directions.
- Keep the fireworks pointed away from people, animals, property, and anything flammable.
- If you’re in doubt whether you should be doing something, don’t do it!
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