Scott A. Dumas, Police Chief
477 Haverhill Street
Rowley, MA 01969
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, July 2, 2018
Contact: John Guilfoil
Rowley Police Warn Residents Against Using Illegal Fireworks
ROWLEY — With the Fourth of July just days away, Chief Scott A. Dumas and the Rowley Police Department are reminding residents that fireworks are illegal in the state of Massachusetts and can lead to serious injury if handled improperly.
It is illegal to use, possess, or sell fireworks of any kind in Massachusetts, including Class C fireworks, which are sometimes falsely called “safe and sane fireworks.”
Class C fireworks include sparklers, party poppers, snappers, firecrackers, spinners, cherry bombs and more. Residents are also prohibited from purchasing fireworks elsewhere and transporting them into the state. Additionally, while the government cannot prohibit the advertising and sale of fireworks by mail, police can and will confiscate illegal shipments. Many consumers attempting to circumvent the law have lost both their money and their fireworks.
“It’s extremely important that residents leave the fireworks displays up to the professionals to avoid any accidents or injury,” Chief Dumas said. “Fireworks are not only dangerous, but they are prohibited in Massachusetts and we will be out enforcing this law.”
The Office of the State Fire Marshal reports that from 2007-2016, there were 826 major fire and explosion incidents involving illegal fireworks reported to the Massachusetts Fire Incident Reporting System. These incidents caused 11 civilian injuries, five fire service injuries and an estimated loss of $1.8 million.
In addition to injuries, the sound created by fireworks exploding can cause stress, which can be experienced by people who may be sensitive to loud noises, such as the elderly and veterans who may suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Pets can also react negatively to the sound created by fireworks.
This does not mean residents cannot enjoy fireworks displays over the course of the summer. However, Chief Dumas recommends that residents only attend celebrations put on by a licensed professional to ensure safety.
Residents should also remember to:
- Watch fireworks displays from a safe distance.
- Call 911 if anyone gets injured by fireworks.
- Set a positive example for children by not using illegal fireworks. If kids see adults using them, they may not realize the dangers and could be encouraged to pick up matches or lighters.
- Be careful around even the smallest fireworks. Sparklers burn at 1,800 degrees and could easily cause severe burns and injuries.
Anyone who has questions about fireworks or fireworks safety should contact the Rowley Police Department at 978-948-7644.