Officials: Follow laws on fireworks

The 2011 Oregon fireworks sales season runs through July 6 and state forestry and fire officials and fireworks wholesalers are reminding residents to keep it legal and keep it safe when using fireworks.

“Legal fireworks may be purchased only from Oregon permitted fireworks retailers and stands,” said Interim State Fire Marshal Jim Walker. “And regulations limit where those fireworks may be used. For example, fireworks are prohibited on all Oregon beaches, in parks, and campgrounds.”

Oregon law bans possession, use or sale of fireworks that fly, explode or travel more than 6 feet on the ground or 12 inches into the air. Fireworks commonly called bottle rockets, Roman Candles and firecrackers are illegal in Oregon.

Under Oregon law, officials may seize illegal fireworks and fine offenders up to $500 per violation. Those who misuse fireworks or allow fireworks to cause damage are liable and may be required to pay fire suppression costs or other damage. Parents are also liable for fireworks damage caused by their children.

During 2010 there were 117 reported fireworks-related fires in Oregon, resulting in more than $1.6 million in property damage.

The OSFM encourages everyone to use the four Bs of safe fireworks use:

n Be Prepared before lighting fireworks: keep water available by using a garden hose or bucket.

n Be Safe when lighting fireworks: keep children and pets away from fireworks.

n Be Responsible after lighting fireworks: never relight a dud. Wait 15 to 20 minutes then soak in a bucket of water before disposal.

n Be Aware: Use only legal fireworks and use them only in legal places.