270.00 Unlawfully dealing with fireworks and dangerous fireworks.
1. Definition of "fireworks" and "dangerous fireworks". (a) The term "fireworks," as used in this section, includes:
(i) display fireworks, which means fireworks devices in a finished state, exclusive of mere ornamentation, primarily intended for commercial displays which are designed to produce visible and/or audible effects by combustion, deflagration or detonation, including, but not limited to, salutes containing more than one hundred thirty milligrams (two grains) of explosive composition, aerial shells containing more than forty grams of chemical composition exclusive of lift charge, and other exhibition display items that exceed the limits of consumer fireworks contained in the American Pyrotechnic Association (APA) Standard 87-1, 2001 edition;
(ii) articles pyrotechnic, which means pyrotechnic devices for professional use similar to consumer fireworks in chemical composition and construction but not intended for consumer use and which articles meet the weight limits for consumer fireworks but are not labeled as such and are classified by the United States department of transportation in 49 CFR 172.101 as UN0431;
(iii) special effects, which means any combination of chemical elements or chemical compounds capable of burning independently of the oxygen of the atmosphere, and designed and intended to produce an audible, visual, mechanical, or thermal effect as an integral part of a motion picture, radio, television, theatrical, or opera production, or live entertainment;
(iv) consumer fireworks which are aerial in performance and are commonly referred to as sky rockets, bottle rockets, missile type rockets, helicopters, aerial spinners, roman candles, mines, shell devices, aerial shell kits, reloadables and audible ground devices which are commonly referred to as firecrackers and chasers, as well as metal wire handheld sparklers;
(v) any blank cartridge, blank cartridge pistol, or toy cannon in which explosives are used, firecrackers, or any preparation containing any explosive or inflammable compound or any tablets or other device commonly used and sold as fireworks containing nitrates, chlorates, oxalates, sulphides of lead, barium, antimony, arsenic, mercury, nitroglycerine, phosphorus or any compound containing any of the same or other explosives, or any substance or combination of substances, or article prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or an audible effect by combustion, explosion, deflagration or detonation, or other device containing any explosive substance, other than sparkling devices as defined in subparagraph (vi) of this paragraph; and
(vi) "sparkling devices," as used in this section, includes:
(1) sparkling devices which are ground-based or hand-held devices that produce a shower of white, gold, or colored sparks as their primary pyrotechnic effect. Additional effects may include a colored flame, an audible crackling effect, an audible whistle effect, and smoke. These devices do not rise into the air, do not fire inserts or projectiles into the air, and do not explode or produce a report (an audible crackling-type effect is not considered to be a report). Ground-based or hand-held devices that produce a cloud of smoke as their sole pyrotechnic effect are also included in this category. Types of devices in this category include:
(A) cylindrical fountain: cylindrical tube containing not more than seventy-five grams of pyrotechnic composition that may be contained in a different shaped exterior such as a square, rectangle, cylinder or other shape but the interior tubes are cylindrical in shape. Upon ignition, a shower of colored sparks, and sometimes a whistling effect or smoke, is produced. This device may be provided with a spike for insertion into the ground (spike fountain), a wood or plastic base for placing on the ground (base fountain), or a wood or cardboard handle to be hand held (handle fountain). When more than one tube is mounted on a common base, total pyrotechnic composition may not exceed two hundred grams, and when tubes are securely attached to a base and the tubes are separated from each other on the base by a distance of at least half an inch (12.7 millimeters), a maximum total weight of five hundred grams of pyrotechnic composition shall be allowed.
(B) cone fountain: cardboard or heavy paper cone containing not more than fifty grams of pyrotechnic composition. The effect is the same as that of a cylindrical fountain. When more than one cone is mounted on a common base, total pyrotechnic composition may not exceed two hundred grams, as is outlined in this subparagraph.
(C) wooden sparkler/dipped stick: these devices consist of a wood dowel that has been coated with pyrotechnic composition. Upon ignition of the tip of the device, a shower of sparks is produced. Sparklers may contain up to one hundred grams of pyrotechnic composition per item.
(2) novelties which do not require approval from the United States department of transportation and are not regulated as explosives, provided that they are manufactured and packaged as described below:
(A) party popper: small devices with paper or plastic exteriors that are actuated by means of friction (a string or trigger is typically pulled to actuate the device). They frequently resemble champagne bottles or toy pistols in shape. Upon activation, the device expels flame-resistant paper streamers, confetti, or other novelties and produces a small report. Devices may contain not more than sixteen milligrams (0.25 grains) of explosive composition, which is limited to potassium chlorate and red phosphorus. These devices must be packaged in an inner packaging which contains a maximum of seventy-two devices.
(B) snapper: small, paper-wrapped devices containing not more than one milligram of silver fulminate coated on small bits of sand or gravel. When dropped, the device explodes, producing a small report. Snappers must be in inner packages not to exceed fifty devices each, and the inner packages must contain sawdust or a similar, impact-absorbing material.
(b) The term "dangerous fireworks" means any fireworks capable of causing serious physical injury and which are: firecrackers containing more than fifty milligrams of any explosive substance, torpedoes, skyrockets and rockets including all devices which employ any combustible or explosive substance and which rise in the air during discharge, Roman candles, and bombs, provided, however, that in cities with a population of one million or more, the term "dangerous fireworks" shall also include sparklers more than ten inches in length or one-fourth of one inch in diameter, or chasers including all devices which dart or travel about the surface of the ground during discharge.
(c) "Fireworks" and "dangerous fireworks" shall not be deemed to include the following nor shall the purchase and use of any items listed below be subject to the provisions of section 61 of title 12 of the New York state codes, rules and regulations or section four hundred eighty, four hundred eighty-one, four hundred eighty-two or four hundred eighty-three of the general business law:
(i) flares of the type used by railroads or any warning lights commonly known as red flares, or marine distress signals of a type approved by the United States coast guard, or
(ii) toy pistols, toy canes, toy guns or other devices in which paper caps containing twenty-five hundredths grains or less of explosive compound are used, providing they are so constructed that the hand cannot come in contact with the cap when in place for use, and toy pistol paper caps which contain less than twenty-hundredths grains of explosive mixture, the sale and use of which shall be permitted at all times, or
(iii) bank security devices which contain not more than fifty grams of any compound or substance or any combination thereof, together with an igniter not exceeding 0.2 gram, capable of producing a lachrymating and/or visible or audible effect, where such device is stored or used only by banks, national banking associations, trust companies, savings banks, savings and loan associations, industrial banks, or credit unions, or by any manufacturer, wholesaler, dealer, jobber or common carrier for such devices and where the total storage on any one premises does not exceed one hundred devices, or
(iv) except in cities with a population of one million or more, in those counties and cities that opt by local law pursuant to paragraph (b) of subdivision five of section 405.00 of this chapter, "fireworks" and "dangerous fireworks" shall not be deemed to include "sparkling devices" as defined in subparagraph (vi) of paragraph (a) of this subdivision.
2. Offense. (a) Except as herein otherwise provided, or except where a permit is obtained pursuant to section 405.00 of this chapter:
(i) any person who shall offer or expose for sale, sell or furnish, any fireworks or dangerous fireworks is guilty of a class B misdemeanor;
(ii) any person who shall offer or expose for sale, sell or furnish any fireworks or dangerous fireworks valued at five hundred dollars or more shall be guilty of a class A misdemeanor;
(iii) any person who shall possess, use, explode or cause to explode any fireworks or dangerous fireworks is guilty of a violation;
(iv) any person who shall offer or expose for sale, sell or furnish, any dangerous fireworks, fireworks or sparkling devices to any person who is under the age of eighteen is guilty of a class A misdemeanor.
(b) A person who has previously been convicted of a violation of subparagraph (iv) of paragraph (a) of this subdivision within the preceding five years and who shall offer or expose for sale, sell or furnish, any dangerous fireworks to any person who is under the age of eighteen, shall be guilty of a class E felony.
(c) Possession of fireworks or dangerous fireworks valued at one hundred fifty dollars or more shall be a presumption that such fireworks were intended to be offered or exposed for sale.
3. Exceptions. (a) The provisions of this section shall not apply to:
(i) fireworks, dangerous fireworks, and sparkling devices while in possession of railroads, common or contract carriers, retailers, wholesalers, distributors, jobbers and transportation companies or transportation agencies for the purpose of transportation to points without the state, the shipment of which is not prohibited by interstate commerce commission regulations as formulated and published from time to time, unless they be held voluntarily by such railroads, common or contract carriers, retailers, wholesalers, distributors, jobbers and transportation agencies or transporting companies as warehousemen for delivery to points within the state;
(ii) signaling devices used by railroad companies or motor vehicles referred to in subdivision seventeen of section three hundred seventy-five of the vehicle and traffic law;
(iii) high explosives for blasting or similar purposes;
(iv) fireworks, dangerous fireworks and sparkling devices for the use thereof by the United States military, and departments of the state and federal government;
(v) the use, transportation and storage of fireworks, dangerous fireworks and sparkling devices and special effects materials in connection with the production of motion pictures, television programs, commercials, and all entertainment media recorded in any current or to be designed format when such use, transportation and storage has been appropriately permitted by the local governmental subdivision having jurisdiction.
(b) Nothing in this article shall be construed to prohibit:
(i) any manufacturer, wholesaler, retailer, dealer or jobber from manufacturing, possessing or selling at wholesale a sparkling device to municipalities, religious or civic organizations, fair associations, amusement parks, or other organizations authorized by the state to store, transport, possess and use or to individuals to store, transport, possess and use;
(ii) the sale or use of blank cartridges for a motion picture, television program, commercial and all entertainment media, or for signal purposes in athletic sports, or for dog trials or dog training;
(iii) the use, storage, transportation or sale or transfer for use of fireworks and sparkling devices in the preparation for or in connection with motion pictures, television programs, commercials, and all entertainment media recorded in any current or to be designed format when such use, transportation and storage has been appropriately permitted by the local governmental subdivision having jurisdiction;
(iv) the manufacture or sale of sparkling devices provided they are to be shipped directly out of such city and any such items are sold in accordance with the provisions of this article; or
(v) except in cities with a population of one million or more, possession of sparkling devices lawfully obtained in a jurisdiction that did opt by local law pursuant to paragraph (b) of subdivision five of section 405.00 of this chapter to exclude "sparkling devices" from the definitions of "fireworks" and "dangerous fireworks", for the purpose of lawful use in another jurisdiction that did opt by local law pursuant to paragraph (b) of subdivision five of section 405.00 of this chapter to exclude "sparkling devices" from the definitions of "fireworks" and "dangerous fireworks". The superintendent of state police shall annually publish a list of those jurisdictions that have opted by local law pursuant to paragraph (b) of subdivision five of section 405.00 of this chapter to exclude "sparkling devices" from the definitions of "fireworks" and "dangerous fireworks".
4. Sales of ammunition not prohibited. Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to prevent, or interfere in any way with, the sale of ammunition for revolvers or pistols of any kind, or for rifles, shot guns, or other arms, belonging or which may belong to any persons whether as sporting or hunting weapons or for the purpose of protection to them in their homes, or, as they may go abroad; and manufacturers are authorized to continue to manufacture, and wholesalers and dealers to continue to deal in and freely to sell ammunition to all such persons for such purposes.
5. Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivision four of this section, it shall be unlawful for any dealer in firearms to sell any ammunition designed exclusively for use in a pistol or revolver to any person, not authorized to possess a pistol or revolver. The violation of this section shall constitute a class B misdemeanor.
Last modified: September 11, 2016