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Sale and use of fireworks now available in Hiawatha
by Staff Report · June 22nd, 2017

After the state of Iowa changed the law regarding the sale and use of fireworks, the Hiawatha City Council has decided to stay with the state law as written.

Deputy Fire Chief Matt Powers stated, "The use of consumer fireworks will be allowed within the Hiawatha City Limits within the constraints of the state law."

The law states that the seller must be licensed by the State Fire Marshall and locations of sales are to be regulated by the City's existing zoning code.

The following is information from the Fire and Police Departments regarding the law and safety tips.

The law:

Only consumer fireworks may be sold or used. This includes firecrackers, roman candles, bottle rockets, chasers, and helicopters/spinners, along with fountains, sparklers, and other similar items classified as 1.4g explosives or in APA 87-1 Chapter 3. This does not include commercial fireworks that create aerial affects or large ground effects. It is your responsibility to know what you are using is allowed. Fireworks can only be sold during certain time periods and the sale of fireworks to anyone under 18 is illegal.

Fireworks may only be used between and including the following dates; From June 1 through July 8, and December 10 through January 3. They can only be used between 9 a.m. and 10 p.m., except for; the Saturday and Sunday before and after July 4, on July 4, and the Saturday and Sunday before and after December 31, they may be used till 11 p.m. On December 31, the use of fireworks will be allowed until 12:30 a.m. the next day, January 1.

It is important to remember that fireworks may only be used on your property, or the property of someone that has consented to use. Do not assume you have permission. Fireworks cannot be used on streets, roads, or other public right away. That also means the use of fireworks is forbidden in all city parks without a permit. The fine for violating any of these laws will be $250. If you cause an injury, fire, or damage to property, you could be charged with additional crimes.

Safety tips:

Fireworks cause nearly 19,000 injuries each year. Young people between the ages of 5-19 have a disproportionate number of injuries. Fireworks must only be used with proper adult supervision, and never shoot fireworks while intoxicated or impaired. Always expect the firework to do something unexpected.

Keep a garden hose or fire extinguisher nearby in case of problems.

Keep a bucket of water to put wire sparklers in. Sparklers account for nearly of all fireworks injuries. Sparklers can burn at 1,200 degrees, can cause 3rd degree burns in a fraction of a second, and improperly discarded sparklers can cause fires.

DO NOT AIM bottle rockets, roman candles, and other fireworks toward people, buildings, vehicles or other property. Keep a distance of 20 feet from buildings or people when lighting fireworks.
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