NEWARK – As Independence Day approaches, Acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman and the state Division of Consumer Affairs offer this reminder: under New Jersey’s Fireworks Regulation Law, N.J.S.A. 21:2-1 et seq., it is unlawful to sell, offer for sale, possess, or use fireworks anywhere in the state without a valid permit, issued by a municipality for a public fireworks display.
“Fireworks displays are a fun and potentially awe-inspiring part of the way Americans celebrate Independence Day and enjoy the summer. But they must be enjoyed responsibly and legally,” Eric T. Kanefsky, Director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs, said.
A valid permit must “name one person who shall be authorized to purchase, or otherwise order, and receive delivery of any fireworks. After such permit shall have been granted, sales, possession, and use of fireworks for such display shall be lawful for that purpose only.”
Any person who sells, offers or exposes for sale, or possesses with intent to sell any fireworks is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree. Any person who purchases, uses, discharges, causes to be discharged, ignites, fires, or otherwise sets in action, or possesses any fireworks without the required permit is guilty of a disorderly persons offense.
In its most recent Fireworks Annual Report, the Consumer Product Safety Commission noted that 60 percent of all fireworks injuries occurred within the 30 days surrounding the Fourth of July holiday. More than half involved burns to the hands, head, and face. More than 5,000 consumers were treated in hospital emergency rooms due to fireworks-related injuries between June 22 and July 22, 2012.
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