What fireworks are legal to set off in Ohio?

4:52 PM, Jun 28, 2013   |    comments
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Next week, we'll hear a familiar crackle, pop and boom over the Northeast Ohio skies. But 4th of July fireworks are usually kept out of the hands of amateurs.

"I'm going to be setting them off for everyone in the neighborhood," says Edward Cromwell, who stocks up on fireworks every year for the 4th of July.

He says he usually sets the fireworks off near his home in Lorain.

That would be illegal in Ohio.

"On the 4th of July, no one usually bothers you though," says Cromwell.

No matter what day of the year, large fireworks are not allowed to be set off in any neighborhood or city in the State of Ohio, unless the person is licensed.

In fact, when you go to buy fireworks, retailers, like Phantom Fireworks, have customers sign forms, acknowledging they know the laws.

"It's a form that quotes the law in Ohio, which is that if you are an Ohio resident, you have 48 hours to leave the state with the fireworks and if you're out of state, you have 72 hours," says Julie Sheridan, manager at the Phantom Fireworks in West Salem.

The person buying the fireworks gets a copy of the form and must show it to law enforcement if caught with fireworks.

Most firework retailers also have you swipe your driver's license to sign in. The information isn't shared with anyone and is used mostly for the retailer to offer customer discounts.

But if someone breaks the law, the state can subpoena those records.

The only products sold by fireworks stores that are legal in Ohio are "novelty" or "trick fireworks," like poppers, snakes and sparklers.

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