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The possession, manufacture, storage, sale, handling or use of fireworks in James City County is a class 1 misdemeanor punishable by up to 12 months in jail and/or $2,500 fine. Professional displays, such as can be seen at Busch Gardens, are allowed through a special permit issued by the Fire Marshal. Fireworks can be turned in without penalty at any JCC fire station or by calling Fire Administration at 757-220-0626 to make arrangements with Fire Marshal staff. Citizens are encouraged to call 911 to report the use of fireworks by others. Fire Marshal staff will conduct extra patrols on July 4 so they can respond quickly to any reports. Citizens who see fireworks for sale at local retailers are encouraged to call Fire Administration at 757-220-0626 so that Fire Marshal staff can investigate. Some products are packaged to look like fireworks this time of year, but do not meet the definition. The Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code defines fireworks as, any item known as a firecracker, torpedo, skyrocket or other substance or thing, of whatever form or construction, that contains any explosive or flammable compound or substance and is intended or commonly known as fireworks and which explodes, rises into the air, or travels laterally, or fires projectiles into the air. The term "fireworks" shall also include pinwheels, sparklers, fountains or Pharaoh's serpents. The term "fireworks" shall not include auto flares or caps for pistols. The goal of the James City County Fire Department and Fire Marshal’s office is to keep the citizens and visitors, as well as their neighbors and loved ones, safe this 4th of July. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA): - Fireworks cause an estimated 18,500 fires in the U.S. each year. - In 2014, U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 10,500 people for fireworks related injuries. - Sparklers account for more than one quarter of emergency room fireworks injuries. - Children aged 5-9 are more than twice as likely as other aged groups to be injured by fireworks. For more information contact Fire Marshal Kenny Driscoll 757-220-0626 Sources: Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code NFPA’s Fireworks report, by Marty Ahrens, June 2016 Consumer Product Safety Commission’s 2014 Fireworks Annual Report by Yongling Tu and Demar Granados