Tulsa's ban on possessing and shooting off fireworks

Monday, July 1st 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Fireworks and what is legal. Tulsa Police say they plan to enforce a ban on shooting off fireworks within city limits. But what exactly is the law when it comes to selling and possessing fireworks?

News on Six reporter Patrina Adger went to a fireworks stand at 81st and Riverside to get the answer.

The land for this fireworks stand is on is not with the city of Tulsa, so it's legal for folks to buy fireworks here. But once they step off this property, are you in the clear in the eyes of the law?

When you drive by a fireworks stand in Tulsa, you probably think you are in city limits but the fireworks stands really aren't. “They're in pockets within the corporate city limits. They maybe county property or property never annexed to the corporate limits of the city of Tulsa” Bob Garner in the City Attorney's office says those stands are required to have permits to sell fireworks.

But when "you" bring your sparklers and other fireworks back across city lines, Tulsa Police Sergeant Doug Brown says you are technically in possession of explosives, which is against city law. "When you go there and buy something there's no way you can leave that island without bringing them within Tulsa city limits and you're at risk at that point."

Garner says the BOCA National Fire Prevention Code, Title 14 doesn't get into possession specifics. He says it all boils down to how your store them. If fireworks are in your possession whether at home or in your car and they inadvertently go off, you're breaking the law. "If you don't comply with the fire prevention code and all the specifics as far a how to store them then yes, you would be n violation and the possession from your storage could be in violation."

And anyone who has fireworks without approval from the city's Fire Marshal face heavy fines. Garner also told us violators, whether it’s possessing fireworks or shooting them off, could be given a citation to appear in court. You could be faced with a $500 fine and or a maximum of 90 days in jail.

And with this being the first Fourth of July after the tragedy of September 11th, police will definitely be on the lookout for violators. Probably the cheapest and safest thing to do is leave it up to the pros.