COLUMBUS, Ohio — The new Ohio law that legalizes personal use of consumer-grade fireworks is now in effect – and it comes just in time for July 4 celebrations.
But this does not mean that fireworks are legal to shoot every day of the year. Instead, the change allows Ohio residents to use consumer-grade on the following days:
- New Year's Day
- Chinese New Year
- Cinco de Mayo
- Memorial Day weekend
- July 3, 4 and 5 as well as the first Friday, Saturday and Sunday before and after July 4
- Labor Day weekend
- Diwali, a festival of lights celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains
- New Year's Eve
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine signed the fireworks legislation late last year.
But not so fast… The new law also permits individual municipalities the ability to opt out, which means discharging fireworks would remain restricted in the communities that make that decision. A number of communities have already decided to opt out – including Berea, Mentor, Parma and Twinsburg. You can see the expanded list HERE.
Despite the new law, University Hospitals officials are encouraging the public to take safety precautions during firework shows.
“We can all agree that fireworks are fun, but the only safe way to observe them is by attending a professional show," said Safe Kids Greater Cleveland Coordinator Briana Price of UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital. "The best way to protect your family is to avoid using fireworks at home, including sparklers. Surprisingly, even sparklers heat up to 1200 degrees.”
UH Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital reminded everyone to follow these guidelines when it comes to fireworks:
- If possible, attend public firework displays. Leave lighting fireworks to the professionals.
- Give children glow sticks instead of sparklers. Sparklers can heat up to more than 1,200 degrees and are dangerous for young children.
- Keep fireworks away from children. Make sure children are a safe distance away from a lit firework
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Editor's note: Video in the player above was originally published in an unrelated fireworks story on June 29, 2022.