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Iowa Department of Public Safety
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Des Moines, Iowa 50319

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For immediate release:  
June 1, 2017


Brisk Business for Fireworks Licensing

-- The State Fire Marshal opened its online licensing portal for fireworks, and in the first 24 hours, more than 88 applications have been started and 46 applications have been filed.  The licensing implements a new law that allows the sale of consumer fireworks.  More applications are anticipated, because more than 600 individuals and companies have established accounts that will allow them to apply for licenses.

“Senate File 489 was signed into law on May 9, and just three weeks later, we are processing dozens of applications,” said State Fire Marshal Jeffrey Quigle.  “We hope to be able to turn around the applications and have licenses issued within 3-5 days.”

Of the 46 license applications filed so far, 15 involve permanent structures and 31 involved temporary structures.  In addition, 4 applications have been filed and approved for the registration of fireworks wholesalers.

The online process allows users to establish an account and file an application and a site plan, which shows compliance with the state statute.  Inspectors will visit the sites to ensure that the statutory requirements are met.  Some local fire departments are conducting inspections, and the State Fire Marshal’s office will conduct inspections in other communities.

Sales of consumer fireworks are allowed between June 1 and July 8 each year, and from December 10 to January 3.  Temporary stands can be used for consumer fireworks sales between June 13 and July 8.  The new law allows for the sale of consumer fireworks by persons or companies licensed by the State Fire Marshal.  Any restrictions on the use of fireworks are determined by city and county officials. Emergency Administrative Rules are available online: https://www.legis.iowa.gov/law/administrativeRules/emergencyDocs

Consumer fireworks include such things as roman candles, bottle rockets, firecrackers, and ground spinners.  Previously, the only fireworks that were legal in Iowa were novelties such as sparklers, caps and snakes.  Iowa joins 43 other states and the District of Columbia in legalizing the sale of consumer fireworks.

Display fireworks – the pyrotechnics that municipalities and businesses use for large-scale public displays – require licensed operators to discharge the fireworks show.  The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms regulates the use of display fireworks. City and county officials also may restrict or prohibit the use of display fireworks.



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