In June, the St. Mary Parish Council approved and enacted a new parish ordinance regulating the use of fireworks in the unincorporated areas of the parish. The new parish law allows certain fireworks to be sold and set off during certain times of the year including the New Year holiday. According to the ordinance, Fireworks may be used, set off or shot from December 15th to January 1st from the hours of 8:00 am to 10:00 pm. Additional hours of fireworks use will be allowed from 10:00 pm December 31st to 1:00 am January 1st. The ordinance prohibits igniting fireworks within 1,000 feet of a church, hospital, school, or public building. The ordinance lists the following types of fireworks that are still off-limits even with the ordinance in effect:
- Cherry bombs
- Tubular salutes
- Two inch American salutes
- Firecrackers with casings the external dimensions of which exceed 1½ inches in length or one-fourth of an inch in diameter
- Repeating bombs
- Aerial bombs
- Torpedoes which exceed three-eighths of an inch in diameter
- Roman candles larger than ten balls
- Sky rockets larger than six ounces
The St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office offers these safety tips from the National Council on Fireworks Safety for the responsible use of fireworks this New Year’s holiday:
- Do not consume alcohol prior to or during the handling of fireworks.
- Designate a responsible adult to supervise all firework activities for your family. Never give fireworks to children.
- Read the cautionary labels and performance descriptions before igniting.
- Always have a bucket of water and a water hose that is turned on and ready to go nearby.
- Wear safety glasses when shooting fireworks.
- Light one firework at a time and then quickly move away.
- Only use fireworks outdoors in a clear area; away from buildings and vehicles.
- Never relight a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
- Never carry fireworks in your pocket or shoot them into metal or glass containers.
- Do not experiment with homemade or attempt to alter or modify fireworks. Use fireworks only in the manner for which they were intended.
- Dispose of spent fireworks by wetting them down and place in a metal trash can away from any building or combustible materials until the next day.
St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office
Public Information Office