Michigan fireworks laws amended to expand the types of fireworks that may be sold to and used by consumers without a permit.

 

Michigan Fireworks Safety Act allows for the sale and use of consumer fireworks without a permit, prescribes licensing requirements and conditions for retailers, and establishes restrictions and penalties for improper use of fireworks. Consumer fireworks are fireworks devices designed to produce visible effects by combustion, that are required to comply with United States Consumer Product Safety Commission requirements, and are listed in American Pyrotechnics Association Standard 87-1, 3.1.2, 3.1.3, or 3.5. Examples include firecrackers, sky lanterns, bottle rockets, roman candles, and certain aerial shells not exceeding 1.75” in diameter.

 

People are still prohibited from selling consumer fireworks unless the person annually obtains a Consumer Fireworks Certificate from the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, Bureau of Fire Services (BFS). A person who knows, or should know, that he or she is required to obtain a Consumer Fireworks Certificate and fails or neglects to do so is guilty of a 2-year misdemeanor. The holder of a Consumer Fireworks Certificate shall prominently display the original or a copy of the certificate in the retail location. A person who fails to display the certificate is responsible for a $100 civil fine.

 

Low-impact fireworks, the fireworks that have historically been legal, remain legal in Michigan. These fireworks are ground-based or handheld devices that produce a shower of white, gold, or color sparks as their primary pyrotechnic effect, with additional effects such as a colored flame, an audible crackling effect, an audible whistle effect. Examples include cylindrical, cone and wheel fountains, smoke devices, ground spinners, and certain sparklers.

 

MCL 28.457(2) allows local units of government to enact an ordinance regulating the ignition, discharge, and use of consumer fireworks; however, an ordinance enacted shall not regulate the use of consumer fireworks on the day before, the day of, or the day after a national holiday. National holidays, as defined in 5 U.S.C. 6103, are:

 

· New Year’s Day, January 1.

· Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., the third Monday in January.

· Washington’s Birthday, the third Monday in February.

· Memorial Day, the last Monday in May.

· Independence Day, July 4.

· Labor Day, the first Monday in September.

· Columbus Day, the second Monday in October.

· Veterans Day, November 11.

· Thanksgiving Day, the fourth Thursday in November.

· Christmas Day, December 25.

 

MCL 28.462(3) prohibits a person from using consumer fireworks or low-impact fireworks while under the influence of alcoholic liquor, a controlled substance, or a combination of both. Violation is a 30-day misdemeanor. If the violation causes damage to another person’s property, violation is a 90-day misdemeanor. If the violation causes serious impairment of another person’s body function, violation is a 5-year felony. If the violation causes another person’s death, violation is a 15-year felony.