Fire marshal issues reminder that all fireworks are banned in unincorporated Sonoma County

By Katherine Minkiewicz-Martine, Staff Writer, SoCoNews, July 1, 2021


Ahead of the Fourth of July holiday weekend, the Sonoma County Fire Marshal issued a warning on Monday that all fireworks use is banned in all unincorporated areas of Sonoma County.

Those caught using fireworks in unincorporated parts of the county could face citations or even jail time and may be held criminally and civilly responsible for any damages caused.

With increased fire danger due to the exceptional drought, Interim Sonoma County Fire Marshal Steve Mosiurchak is encouraging folks who want to see fireworks to only attend professional displays.

“With our extreme drought, using fireworks is not just illegal, it’s more dangerous than ever,” Mosiurchak said in a statement. “Keep everyone safe this Fourth of July and leave the fireworks to the professionals.”

Although “Safe and Sane” fireworks may be legal in neighboring jurisdictions, they are part of the Fireworks Ban and are not allowed in the unincorporated area.

“Now that we’ve reopened our economy, let’s make sure that Sonoma County families can celebrate a meaningful and incident-free Fourth of July,” said Sonoma County Supervisor Lynda Hopkins, Chair of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors. “That means attending a safe, sanctioned event when it comes to fireworks during fire season.”

In addition to the county’s ban, other areas may have similar concerns and rules. On June 21, the Sonoma County Fire District released the following statement.

“Windsor Police responded to multiple calls last night for fireworks in several areas of the town. We want to remind our community that all fireworks, including ‘safe and sane’ are illegal in not only the town of Windsor but the entire Sonoma County Fire District and the unincorporated areas of Sonoma County. This is a dangerous activity and poses a threat to our community at large. Our community is fatigued with fire threats and this will not be tolerated! Thanks to our partners at Windsor PD for responding to these calls for service.”

According to the National Fire Protection Association, fireworks start an average of 18,500 fires per year, including 1,300 structure fires, 300 vehicle fires and nearly 17,000 other fires.

According to a Permit Sonoma press release, in 2018, U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 9,100 people for fireworks-related injuries, 5,600 of which occurred between June 22 and July 22, 2018.

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