New Year’s Eve fireworks will continue to be sold through Dec. 31, but they’re not for use inside city limits.
Billings Fire Marshal Mike Spini said city code prohibits the sale, use and possession of fireworks within city limits. All three are permitted in county areas outside city limits, but revelers are advised to use caution while using fireworks in rural areas, to be aware of their surroundings and to obtain permission when entering private property.
“We aren’t going to have a bunch of grass fires with 18 inches of snow on the ground,” Spini said. “It was a real concern a few weeks ago when we were going into winter with no snow.”
Spini said that unlike the July 4 holiday, firefighters receive few complaints about fireworks being set off inside Billings city limits on New Year’s Eve.
“Everybody’s bundled up in their houses, and it’s a limited sale” lasting three days instead of the 10-day or so window leading up to the Independence Day holiday.
Spini offered these fireworks safety measures:
- Use fireworks outdoors only
- Always have water handy (hose or buckets of water)
- Use fireworks only as intended. Do not alter or combine fireworks.
- Never re-light a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes and soak the dud in a bucket of water.
- Use fireworks in green areas away from dry grass, forests and structures.
- Children should be supervised by adults.
- Keep unused fireworks away from firing areas.
- Never have any portion of your body directly over a firework while lighting.
- Observe local laws.
- Use common sense when using fireworks.