CAL FIRE Takes Zero Tolerance Stance Against Illegal Fireworks

Anyone Caught With Illegal Fireworks Could Face Steep Fines & Arrest


Sacramento – The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) concluded a statewide operation designed to prevent illegal fireworks from entering California.  The statewide operation, conducted between June 26th and June 30th, resulted in 29 felonies, 165 misdemeanor citations, 25 infractions and the confiscation of over 48,440 pounds of illegal fireworks.

“Everyone needs to understand the dangers associated with the use of illegal fireworks or misuse of legal fireworks. Any person who starts a fire from fireworks – even accidentally – can be held liable for the fire suppression costs as well as property damage costs,” said Mike Richwine, California State Fire Marshal. “Possession of illegal fireworks can lead to a possible fine of up to $50,000 as well as prison time for up to one year.”

CAL FIRE is taking a zero tolerance stand against anyone in possession of or transporting illegal fireworks. Every year hundreds of injuries and fires are caused by illegal and misused fireworks.

Fireworks that are illegal in California are those that explode, leave the ground, or move about the ground uncontrollably. Illegal fireworks include items such as skyrockets, bottle rockets, and roman candles. Anyone caught with illegal fireworks could face severe fines and even arrest.

All legal fireworks include a “Safe and Sane” logo from the California State Fire Marshal on the packaging but some illegal fireworks, especially those from out of the state, may have a forged logo on them. If you are not sure if your fireworks are legal, you can contact your nearest CAL FIRE facility or local fire station.  

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Monica Vargas

Monica is an Information Officer for the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES). She has been involved in the Aliso Canyon Gas Leak, Valley Fire, Butte Fire, historic drought, Oroville Dam Emergency Spillway Incident, 2017 winter storms, North Bay Fires, Camp Fire, Ridgecrest Earthquake and EMAC PIO support to 2020 Puerto Rico earthquake. She previously served Cal OES as an analyst in international affairs, technology operations and executive staff support.

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