State law governs the regulation of fireworks, including what fireworks are legal, licensing for public fireworks displays and for fireworks sellers, and when fireworks may be discharged.
The Washington State Patrol (WSP) enforces the state fireworks laws (see chapter 70.77 RCW and chapter 212-17 WAC). For information on general fireworks laws, licensing, and fireworks information for emergency services, see the WSP Fireworks page.
However, state law leaves some room for local regulation, such as when fireworks may be sold or discharged. Cities and counties may even prohibit the sale and discharge of fireworks entirely.
Any local fireworks ordinances that are more restrictive than state law may not take effect until at least one year after adoption.
Prohibited Types of Fireworks
RCW 70.77.401 prohibits the sale of, or offer to sell, the following types of fireworks:
[C]consumer fireworks which are classified as sky rockets, or missile-type rockets, firecrackers, salutes, or chasers as defined by the United States department of transportation and the federal consumer products safety commission except as provided in RCW 70.77.311.
The Washington State Fire Marshal's Office has two handouts that can assist in the identification of legal and illegal fireworks:
- Legal Consumer Fireworks for Sale in Tents and Stands per RCW 70.77.136
- Illegal Fireworks and Illegal Explosive Devices
Dates and Times Fireworks May Be Sold or Discharged
RCW 70.77.395 sets the allowable dates and times for sale or discharge of fireworks, as shown in the table below. However, this does not apply to tribal lands.
Cities and counties may, by ordinance, further restrict the days and times when fireworks may be sold and discharged, or even prohibit the sale and discharge of fireworks entirely, but the local regulations may not be less restrictive than state law.
Below are some local cities and county ordinances that may be more restrictive than state fireworks laws, including those that ban fireworks entirely.
Benton City, City of - Chapter 8.06 FIREWORKS REGULATION
West Richland, City of - Chapter 8.22 FIREWORKS - All Fireworks that are legal in the State of Washington are also legal in the City Limits of the City of West Richland only. To view a portion of the West Richland Municipal Code regarding fireworks dates/times of sale and use and age restrictions, visit WRMC section 8.22 "Fireworks" online. More information about fireworks in West Richland can be found here... https://www.westrichland.org/179/Fireworks-Information
Richland, City of - 20.02.278 Manufacture, sale and discharge of fireworks.
Benton County - CHAPTER 7.30 FIREWORKS - Most fireworks are regulated in Benton County for information on what types of fireworks are allowed in Benton County please refer to Benton County Code Chapter 7.30.120. Fireworks are not allowed in Kennewick or Prosser. Fireworks can be purchased or discharged anytime between 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m. beginning at noon on June 28th until noon on July 6th. The hours of discharge are extended until 1 a.m. on July 4th. Firework sale and discharge is prohibited at all other times of the year except by a special permit from the Fire Marshal.
Permitting and Licensing
A license issued by the State Patrol is required for:
- Wholesale and/or retail fireworks sales, manufacturing, or importing (RCW 70.77.315).
- Possession or use of fireworks, other than consumer fireworks lawfully purchased at retail (RCW 70.77.255(4) and RCW 70.77.315).
- Public display of fireworks (including those put on by local governments). A "public display of fireworks" is defined by RCW 70.77.160 as "an entertainment feature where the public is or could be admitted or allowed to view the display or discharge of display fireworks."
There are licensing exceptions for the purchase and use of certain agricultural and wildlife fireworks by government agencies and for the purchase of consumer fireworks by religious or private organizations for "religious or specific purposes," provided a permit is obtained from the local fire official (RCW 70.77.311).
In addition to obtaining a the state license, RCW 70.77.260(1) instructs anyone wishing to manufacture, import, sell, or transport fireworks must also obtain a local permit issued by a city or county (as the case may be) prior to carrying out these activities.
An application is to be made to the local fire official (RCW 70.77.260), who submits a report of findings and a recommendation for or against the issuance of the permit, together with reasons, to the governing body (RCW 70.77.265). The governing body, or a person designated by the governing body, must grant the permit if it meets state standards and any standards that may be adopted by local ordinance (RCW 70.77.270). The governing body must complete this process:
- by June 10, or no less than 30 days after receipt of an application, whichever date occurs first, for sales commencing on June 28 and on December 27; or
- by December 10, or no less than 30 days after receipt of an application, whichever date occurs first, for sales commencing only on December 27 (RCW 70.77.270).
If the application is for a public display permit, only the city or county governing body (but not a designee) may grant the permit, based on an investigation by the local fire official (RCW 70.77.280).
Cities and counties may impose fees for fireworks retail sales and displays sufficient to cover all legitimate costs, up to the maximum amounts prescribed by RCW 70.77.555.
page information found here: https://mrsc.org/explore-topics/public-safety/fire-protection/fireworks-regulation