Fireworks – What’s Legal, What’s Not?

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With 4th of July weekend is here and here is a summary of the Wisconsin fireworks law regarding which fireworks are legal and which are not. Please note the guidelines listed below apply to Wisconsin State Law as Ledgeview follows state law for fireworks.

State law allows the sale, possession and use, without a permit, of sparklers not exceeding 36 inches in length, stationary cones and fountains, toy snakes, smoke bombs, caps, noisemakers and confetti poppers with less than ¼ grain of explosive mixture. Wis. Stat. § 167.10(1). There is no age restriction on sale, possession or use of these devices and the statute does not classify them as fireworks. The use and sale of some of these items may be prohibited by county ordinances. These are the only kinds of “fireworks,” as that word is commonly used, that a person may use or possess without a permit or that may be sold to a person who does not have a permit.

Possessing or using any other fireworks, including, for example, firecrackers, roman candles, bottle rockets and mortars, is illegal in Wisconsin without a valid permit. Wis. Stat. § 167.10(3). A commonly used rule of thumb is that a permit is required if the device explodes or leaves the ground. The sale of these fireworks to a person without a valid permit is also illegal, Wis. Stat. § 167.10(2), unless the seller is a wholesaler or jobber selling fireworks to a nonresident for shipment out of state. Wis. Stat. § 167.10(4). In other words, when purchasing “flying” fireworks from a stand, depending on where the stand is located and the local ordinances that apply, the seller may  ask if you have a permit.  If not, a permit application and permit fee will be collected at the time of purchase.

Ledgeview does not have a fireworks permit.  To make a fireworks complaint, call Brown County Sheriff’s Department at 448-4200

What is the fines if caught lighting off illegal fireworks?  A fine up to $1,000 is the fine for anyone who purchases, possesses, uses, or sell such fireworks without a permit.  Also note that each firework illegally used or sold is considered a separate violation, and parents can be held responsible if kids are caught.

Celebrate in safety with social distancing, no face touching, and use hand sanitizer.  Happy 4th of July!


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