ATLANTA - A year after Georgia legalized fireworks, a backlash of complaints caused lawmakers to change the law… again. It means new rules are now in place for your 4th of July fireworks. Here are the four things you need to know to stay within in the new law this holiday:
1. Fireworks can be set off until midnight on July 4th. Those are special provisions for the 4th of July holiday. That deadline is 1:00 am for New Year's Eve. Every other day of the year, the hours are restricted to allow fireworks between 10:00 am and 9:00 pm. Local governments are allowed to pass ordinances that extend those limits.
2. No fireworks are allowed in any public road, right-of-way, or park.
3. The law bans setting off fireworks within 100 yards of various specific locations. Those locations include "quiet places" like a hospital, nursing home, or prison. It also includes fire danger locations like electric plants, water treatment facilities, and gas stations.
4. It’s illegal to use fireworks while impaired by drugs or alcohol and if you’re under the age of 18. The law doesn't set a specific BAC, but sets the limit at "where a law enforcement officer has probable cause to believe that it is unsafe for such person to use or explode fireworks". Under the law, 16 and 17-year-old can transport fireworks is working for a licensed fireworks distributor, but only those 18 and older can ignite fireworks. And no one under the age of 16 is allowed to possess consumer fireworks.
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