Chesterfield Fire warns of illegal fireworks ahead of 4th of July

Those who do break the ordinance could receive a Class One misdemeanor.
Published: Jun. 29, 2023 at 1:55 PM EDT
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CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WWBT) -It’s a common phrase Chesterfield Fire Department hears every 4th of July when it comes to fireworks:

“The first words people say is, ‘we did not know this was illegal in Chesterfield,’” said Chesterfield Fire Captain J.A. Harvey.

However, county law says that all fireworks, regardless of type, cannot be possessed, stored, sold, used or handled in Chesterfield. Those who do break the ordinance could receive a Class One misdemeanor.

”A Class One misdemeanor here in the Commonwealth of Virginia would be up to a $2,500 fine or up to 12 months in jail,” Harvey said.

There were four structure fires caused by fireworks in Chesterfield last year, according to the fire department. In the last five years, Chesterfield Fire responded to 27 firework-related incidents.

”We’re busy; the police department is busy,” Harvey said. “All night long, we’ll have four, five fire marshalls out working.”

Fireworks also pose a high risk of permanent injury or death.

”General firecrackers, I mean something that is so minuscule it could actually, if someone has it in their hand, it could actually blow a finger off, it could break a finger, cause significant damage to their hand,” Harvey said.

That’s why Chesterfield Fire is reminding people to stay away from fireworks this July 4 and leave it up to the professionals by going to see one of the many fireworks shows in the area.

”They’re certified as pyrotechnicians through the state of Virginia; it’s a safe place to go and a safe environment for your family to come out and have some fun,” Harvey said.