Are fireworks legal in Connecticut?
Yes and NO.
Office of State Fire Marshal Fireworks - Illegal in Connecticut
ALL FIREWORKS (with the exception of sparklers) ARE ILLEGAL in Connecticut and may NOT be sold, purchased or used, with the EXCEPTION of regulated fireworks displays by state licensed, professional pyrotechnicians at sites which have been approved by state and local officials. Fireworks are defined by law as "any combustible or explosive composition prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or audible effect by combustion, explosion, deflagration or detonation." Novelties, and trick noise makers such as smoke bombs, party poppers and snappers and the "snake", and are banned by Connecticut General Statute § 29-357. Effective June 1, 2000, Public Act 00-198 allows any person who is sixteen years of age or older to buy, sell and use sparklers of not more than one hundred grams of pyrotechnic mixture which are non-explosive and non-aerial.
Larger so-called "fire crackers" are actually explosive devices which are banned by both state and federal law. They include M-80’s, M-100’s, M-250’s and larger, cherry bombs, quarter sticks, block busters and other similar devices. Possession of these devices is prohibited by Connecticut General Statute § 29-348, Illegal Possession of Explosives; manufacture of these devices is prohibited by Connecticut General Statute § 53-80a., Manufacture of Bombs. The only exceptions to the fireworks statute are paper caps which contain less than .025 grains of explosive material.
Transportation to Connecticut of fireworks which have been privately purchased out-of-state is illegal. The fine for violation of transportation regulations is not more than $1,000 for a first offense; persons found guilty of subsequent offenses will be fined not less than $1,000 and not more than $2,000, or imprisoned not more than six months, or both. If injury or death results from such violation, the fine shall be not more than $10,000 or imprisonment for not more than ten years, or both. To order and purchase fireworks by mail is illegal in Connecticut.
Violation of CGS § 29-357(d) calls for a fine of not more than $100 or a prison term of not more than 90 days or both; offering for sale, exposing for sale, or selling at retail or possessing with intent to sell a value exceeding $10,000 is a Class A misdemeanor.
The penalty for illegal possession of explosives, CGS § 29-348, is a fine of not more than $10,000 or imprisonment of not more than 10 years, or both for each offense.
Violation of CGS § 53-80a (manufacture of bombs) is a Class B felony; if a fire caused by fireworks is determined to be arson, first degree (CGS § 53a-111), it is a Class A felony; 53a-112 arson second degree, Class B felony; arson, third degree, Class C felony; or if such a fire is determined to be reckless burning, (53a-114), it is a Class D felony.
The only safe way to enjoy fireworks is to attend a public display conducted at a state approved site by state-licensed pyrotechnicians.
- Sale of Sparklers - Vendor Information
- License & Permits for Fireworks
Click here for the State of CT Office of the Fire Marshal Website.
Re: Sale of Sparklers
Public Act No. 00-198, which took effect June 1, 2000, legalized the sale, purchase and use of Sparklers by anyone age sixteen or older.
Sparklers, as determined by the state, include sparkling devices of not more than one hundred grams of pyrotechnic mixture per item, which are non-explosive and non-aerial. These include the common stick sparklers and cone, base, spike and handle fountains.
Did Public Act 00-198 legalize any other types of fireworks?
No. Although there were others listed in the proposed bill, sparklers were the only items that made it through the process. Smoke bombs, poppers, snakes, glowworms, and other novelty items are still illegal.
Items below are included as illegal to sell, purchase or use in Connecticut:
Roman Candles, Bottle Rockets, Fire Crackers, Novelties: Smoke Bombs, Party Poppers, Snappers, Snakes