Fireworks Safety and the Law

July, 3, 2018

Although the purchase of some types of fireworks may be legal in some neighboring  states, the fact remains that they are still illegal to use or even possess in Illinois. In addition to the illegality, at times people tend to overlook the obvious dangers involved. Fireworks can also find their way into the hands of children who can be burned, blinded and otherwise injured from heat, fire, projectiles and explosions. Remember, fireworks are gunpowder explosives and are just plain dangerous.

Here are something interesting facts from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission regarding fireworks injuries that occurred in 2014.

  • U.S. Hospital emergency departments treated an estimated 10,500 fireworks-related injuries in 2014.
  • An estimated 67% of the total 2014 treated injuries occurred between June 20 and July 20.
  • Of the fireworks injuries, 74% were to males and 26% were to females.
  • An estimated 1,400 of the 2014 treated injuries were sparkler-related.
  • An estimated 1,400 of the 2014 treated injuries were firecracker-related.

River Forest ordinances prohibit any person from using, selling, delivering, exploding or possessing fireworks in the village all year round. The term "fireworks" includes firecrackers, cherry bombs, M-80's, bottle rockets and Roman candles.

Remember, the laws in Illinois do not change over the July 4 holiday or for any other holiday. In other words, fireworks are no more legal on these dates than they are at other times of the year. The River Forest Police Department stresses that all complaints of fireworks are thoroughly investigated. If someone is found to be in violation, the items in question will be confiscated and the person(s) involved will be arrested and/or charged when appropriate. This applies to both adults and minors alike.

Contact the Crime Prevention Unit at (708) 366-7125 ext. 343 or via e-mail if you have any questions regarding the fireworks laws.