Lighting fireworks legal during the holidays in Phoenix

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A few years ago, the law in Arizona was revised to create the same timeline for all cities and towns to light fireworks: Dec. 24 to Jan. 3. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A few years ago, the law in Arizona was revised to create the same timeline for all cities and towns to light fireworks: Dec. 24 to Jan. 3. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Fireworks do affect the air quality, there’s just no legislation that prohibits them during no burn days. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Fireworks do affect the air quality, there’s just no legislation that prohibits them during no burn days. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
If you do plan on using fireworks, make sure you take all the necessary safety precautions. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) If you do plan on using fireworks, make sure you take all the necessary safety precautions. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
You’ve likely seen fireworks stands popping up all over the Valley, ready to ring in the New Year. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) You’ve likely seen fireworks stands popping up all over the Valley, ready to ring in the New Year. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

You’ve likely seen fireworks stands popping up all over the Valley, ready to ring in the New Year.

It’s a favorite way for many to celebrate the holidays, but don’t hold onto those fireworks for too long, or you won’t be able to use them.

A few years ago, the law in Arizona was revised to create the same timeline for all cities and towns to light fireworks: Dec. 24 to Jan. 3. You also have to be careful where you set them off. Any public owned place, like a public park, parking lot or school, is off limits. If you don’t follow the rules you could be hit with a $1,000 fine.

But what about on no burn days. Are fireworks allowed? The legal answer is yes, but Bob Huhn with the Maricopa County Air Quality Department says just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.

[RELATED: Should the public be allowed to light fireworks? (July 1, 2016)]

“Fireworks bring a whole different level to it,” says Huhn. “What we’ve noticed in the past is we’ve seen a spike right at midnight on New Year’s Eve.”

Fireworks do affect the air quality, there’s just no legislation that prohibits them during no burn days. A few years ago on New Year’s Day, Maricopa County exceeded the Federal Health Standard for air quality, partly from fireworks.

[READ MORE: Smoke from fireworks hangs heavy on No Burn Day (Jan. 1, 2016)]

If you do plan on using fireworks, make sure you take all the necessary safety precautions. The Phoenix Fire Department recommends:

  1. Observe all laws concerning the use of fireworks.
  2. Young children should not be allowed to play with fireworks under any circumstances.
  3. Older children should only be permitted to handle fireworks under close adult supervision.
  4. Light fireworks outdoors in a clear area away from houses, dry leaves or grass and flammable materials.
  5. Keep a bucket of water nearby for emergencies and to douse fireworks that do not properly ignite.
  6. Keep a hose with a shut-off nozzle nearby. The water should be on and the hose should be ready to instantly douse any wayward fires.
  7. Do not attempt to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks. Soak them with water and throw them away.
  8. Be sure people are out of range before lighting fireworks.
  9. Never have any portion of your body directly over a firework while lighting. Be sure to wear protective eyewear. An errant ember could cause permanent eye damage or, in extreme cases, blindness.
  10. Don't experiment with homemade fireworks.
  11. Sparklers should only be handled by kids older than 12.
  12. Make sure that people with lit sparklers stay at least 10 feet apart.
  13. Put all used sparklers in the water bucket.

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