As the Independence Day holiday approaches, the state Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJDOL) is reminding residents and businesses that buying or selling fireworks is illegal under New Jersey law.
“We understand that everyone associates fireworks with the Fourth of July, but for safety’s sake, setting off fireworks is best left up to the trained professionals,” said Labor Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo. “Every year, far too many people are needlessly injured, and occasionally, fatally wounded in fireworks mishaps. Fireworks are not only dangerous – they are against the law in New Jersey.”
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 73% of fireworks-related injuries in 2022 occurred in the weeks immediately before and after Independence Day. This includes 11 fatalities and 10,200 people who needed treatment in hospital emergency rooms for burns and other serious injuries caused by fireworks.
In New Jersey, firecrackers, torpedoes, skyrockets, bottle rockets, Roman candles and similar fireworks containing explosives are illegal to sell or possess. The only exception is sparklers (for people 16 and older) and novelty items such as snappers and poppers.
Anything else requires a permit typically reserved for commercial companies that meet strict safety requirements and have received approval from local fire and police departments to hold a public fireworks display.
New Jersey’s fireworks laws are enforced by NJDOL’s Division of Public Safety & Occupational Safety & Health, which conducted 19 inspections of entertainment shows using fireworks in 2022 to ensure proper licensing and oversight.
For more information about New Jersey fireworks laws, including criminal penalties, go here.