Fireworks Laws and Risks

Marilu Trainor

Fireworks can be exciting, but it is important to know the laws and risks associated with their use.

According to the National Fire Protection Agency website, an estimated 19,500 fires started by fireworks were reported to local U.S. fire departments in 2018. More fires are reported on the Fourth of July than any other day of the year.

What’s legal/illegal in AZ?

State law regulates the use and sales of fireworks in the Grand Canyon state. Arizona Revised Statutes Section 36-1606 regulates when permissible fireworks can be bought, sold, and used in our state.

Permissible fireworks may not be sold to person(s) under the age of 16. Be sure to check local municipalities rules on fireworks before purchasing your products.

The sale of permissible consumer fireworks is allowed:

* April 25 through May 6, for use May 4 through 6

* May 20 through July 6, for use June 24 through July 6

* Dec. 10 through Jan. 3, for use Dec. 24 through Jan. 3

* Five days before the first day of Diwali through the third day of Diwali of each year, for use the second and third days of Diwali


If you think the sounds of whistles and booms will annoy your neighbors, it’s likely illegal. Any type of firework that shoots up, explodes, or detonates in the air is illegal to use year-round in Arizona. Illegal fireworks include skyrockets, bottle rockets, reloadable shell devices, aerials, and single-tube.


Sparklers, smoker devices, and novelty fireworks such as snakes, party poppers, and snappers. Other types of fireworks are allowed seasonally, such as ground spinners, sparkling wheel devices, and fountain-style fireworks.

There is a handy chart of legal and illegal fireworks to print before you plan to shop for fireworks at

Tips to celebrate safely with fireworks

* Never allow young children to play with, or ignite, fireworks, including sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit—hot enough to melt some metals.

* Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy, in case of fire or other mishap.

* Light fireworks one at a time, then move away quickly.

* Never try to relight or handle malfunctioning fireworks.

* Everyone should wear protective eyewear.

* Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Move to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.

* Never point or throw fireworks (including sparklers) at anyone.

* After fireworks complete their burning, soak used and unused fireworks in a bucket of water for a few hours before discarding.

* Never ignite devices in a container.

* If you have a pet, there are many articles to read in order to prepare your pet during fireworks activities. Statistics show more pets end up in shelters on July 5 than any other day of the year.