From the Office of Emergency Management

There have many comments and questions due to fireworks again this year so I will do my best to clarify and I will be posting comments from the undersheriff and state statutes.

First of all, weather-wise for the rest of the week, daytime temperatures will average in the mid to upper 80’s with overnight lows in the 60’s. Winds, on average, will be southerly for the most part 5 to 15 mph. Keep in mind that the winds will vary from southerly to southeasterly at times and if we have a weak front push through, the winds may shift to the north or northwest. We are not expecting rain, but it’s not completely out of the question. Nothing severe with any storms that we “might” have is expected.  

 

This said, here is a portion and I feel this is the MOST important part of the State Statute on fireworks. As you all know, Enid Fire has already put articles in the paper on this issue within the city limits. The Sheriff has also put articles in the paper. The undersheriff posted information on his Facebook page that will be highlighted at the end of this email in red. The statute that I am pasting to this email will be in blue. Please read and feel free to pass this on as we don’t want to be as busy this year putting out fires as we all were last year. Just because we are cooler and the winds aren’t blowing 90 to nothing doesn’t mean we are out of danger. Fires still happen and if you start one and are caught, law enforcement will deal with you on that one and you will be held accountable for the damage and the responders.

(c) It shall be unlawful to explode or ignite fireworks within five hundred (500) feet of any church, hospital, asylum, unharvested, flammable agricultural crop, public school or where fireworks are stored, sold or offered for sale. No person shall ignite or discharge any permissible articles of fireworks within or throw the same from a motor vehicle; nor shall any person place or throw any ignited article of fireworks into or at such a motor vehicle or at or near any group of people.
Historical Data
Laws 1969, c. 337, § 7, operative June 1, 1969; Laws 1981, c. 268, § 6, emerg. eff. June 25, 1981.
Section 1628 – Violations and Penalties – Contraband – Enforcement.

Violation of any provision of this act is a misdemeanor punishable as follows:
(a) Discharging fireworks in violation of this act shall be punishable by a fine not to exceed One Hundred Dollars ($100.00).
(b) Illegal sale, violation of licensing provision, false labeling, or any other violation of this act shall be punishable by a fine not to exceed One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00), ninety (90) days’ imprisonment in the county jail, or both. In the event of a second conviction the license shall be revoked for a period of eighteen (18) months. Each violation of this act shall constitute a separate offense. No other person shall be granted a license to operate in the same location during the period of a revoked license.
(c) The State Fire Marshal, his deputies, or any authorized police or peace officer of this state shall seize as contraband any illegal fireworks as defined under the terms of this act. Fireworks seized in the enforcement of this act shall be held in custody of the county sheriff in which county such fireworks were seized. The party surrendering the fireworks, if aggrieved by the action, may file an appeal in writing to the district court in the county where fireworks were seized. Upon hearing the appeal, the district court may authorize the return of part or all of the confiscated fireworks; otherwise, the court shall authorize and direct that such contraband fireworks be destroyed.
(d) The provisions of this act shall be enforced by the State Fire Marshal and local fire marshals, the sheriff, the police or any peace officer licensed or authorized by this state or by their respective deputies.

Here are the undersheriff’s comments from this morning:

The sheriff’s office has received many calls, both as complaints and questions about, the discharge of fireworks in the county. Please be aware, just because a person is outside of the city limits of Enid, it is not lawful to discharge fireworks from a county or state roadway, or on property not owned by the person shooting fireworks.
Our deputies will be issuing citations this year, for persons found to be discharging fireworks on county roadways, or near unharvested crops. The fines on these citations, depending on the circumstances, range from $196.00 all the way up to in excess of $2,000.00. Littering/dumping on any public or private property without consent, with materials which are flammable or could cause a fire, carries a minimum state fine of $2,196.00.
Please celebrate responsibly, and respect the property of others. We want everyone to celebrate our Independence Day as a country and show your patriotism, but please don’t do it in a manner so as to cause others to lose property or have damage caused to public or private property!

 

Have a safe holiday and we as responders are on stand-by just in case.

 

Mike