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Celebrate safely this Fourth of July



As the 4th of July holiday approaches, Clallam County Sheriff Bill Benedict reminds citizens of the safe and legal use of fireworks.

Legal fireworks in Washington State are known as “consumer fireworks.” Legal Consumer Fireworks do not include things like firecrackers, bottle rockets and missiles.

These illegal fireworks cause traumatic injuries and are prone to starting fires. Items such as M-80’s and larger, Cherry Bombs, and Tennis Ball Bombs ARE NOT FIREWORKS.

These “fireworks” are actually explosives and are powerful enough to cause life-altering injuries or even death. There are over 1000 emergencies every year in Washington State attributed to fireworks.

For extensive information from the State Fire Marshall about which fireworks are legal and which are not — with photos to help identify them — go to the Washington State Patrol website at www.wsp.wa.gov/fire/fireworks.htm#kit

Legal hours of use
Legal fireworks may be used only at specific times:
• June 28, noon-11 p.m.
• June 29-July 4, 9 a.m.-11 p.m
• July 5, 9 a.m.-9 p.m.

When using fireworks, remember the three B’s:
• Be prepared before you light fireworks by using legal fireworks, keeping them out
of children’s reach, keeping pets inside and calm, and keeping a hose or bucket of
water handy just in case.
• Be safe by using fireworks only outside, don’t hold them in your hand, protect
your eyes, light one at a time, and do not re-light duds.
• Be responsible when you’re done by soaking spent fireworks in water, clean up
after yourself and keep matches and lighters away from children.

Deputies will be patrolling on the evening of July 4 to enforce fireworks laws throughout the county. Officers typically see many complaints and make every effort to respond to them. The Sheriff’s Office Marine Unit will be on patrol at Lake Sutherland on July 4 enforcing all laws including boating laws, under aged drinking, and fireworks laws.

Citizens are reminded that possession of illegal fireworks is a misdemeanor crime. And, if you are using fireworks that cause damage to the property of another, you are civilly liable for any damages.

The Clallam County Sheriff’s Office wishes citizens a safe, sane and enjoyable holiday. Drink responsibly and refrain from the use and consequences of illegal fireworks.
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