Fireworks sales start Saturday in Jackson County
No public fireworks displays have been scheduled in Jackson County this year due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) situation, but starting this coming Saturday, June 27, local fireworks enthusiasts will have the opportunity to stock up on Class C fireworks for their own backyard displays.
Saturday marks the official start of fireworks sales in the Holton and Jackson County area, and Class C fireworks may be legally sold and discharged through Sunday, July 5, it has been reported. Class C fireworks include firecrackers, Roman candles, rockets, shells, fountains, “cakes” and other pyrotechnic displays.
In Kansas, however, bottle rockets and M-80s — firecrackers that contain more than 50 milligrams of gunpowder per cracker — are illegal, as is the sale or discharge of metal-handled sparklers and Chinese lanterns, or “sky lanterns,” in Jackson County.
In Holton, fireworks may be discharged between 8 a.m. and 11 p.m. starting Saturday, June 27 and continuing through Sunday, July 5. The exception is Saturday, July 4, when they may be discharged between 8 a.m. and midnight, according to city ordinance.
In Hoyt, city ordinance allows fireworks discharges on days that fireworks are sold until 10 p.m. The main exception is on Saturday, July 4, when fireworks may be discharged until midnight, and no fireworks are allowed in Hoyt City Park.
Young people are reminded to exercise care when discharging fireworks in the coming days. Some of the most common tips for handling fireworks safely include:
• Don’t throw or propel fireworks in the direction of or into the path of anyone else or into a vehicle. In Holton, it is prohibited by city ordinance.
Furthermore, the Kansas Fire Marshal’s office notes it is illegal “to shoot fireworks on or under a vehicle, on any public roadway, within 50 feet of a firework stand or where fireworks are stored, and gas stations or anywhere liquid gas including propane is stored.”
• Buy high-quality fireworks from a legitimate, reliable source, and don’t carry them in your pocket. Store them in cool, dry places.
• Eight words found on most firework labels say it all: “Place on ground, light fuse and get away.” Also, don’t discharge them indoors or in glass or metal containers, and if it doesn’t go off the first time, don’t try to light it again.
• Choose your fireworks display site and methods with care. Mishandled fireworks cause hundreds of fires that can cause severe damage to homes, motor vehicles and grasslands, causing hundreds of thousands of dollars in damages each year — not to mention the innumerable injuries caused by careless handling of fireworks.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment noted that in 2018, there were more than 130 reported fireworks-related injuries in Kansas during the first week of July. Injuries to hands were involved in 33 percent of incidents, while one-fourth of incidents involved injuries to the eyes, face and head.
• Make sure that children are carefully supervised if and when handling fireworks. And let the professionals handle the “big stuff.”
Editor's note: Any Jackson County communities that would like to have their rules for fireworks added to this story may do so by calling (785) 364-3141 or e-mailing email@example.com