The summertime calls for fireworks and fireworks call for safety. Not necessarily in the act of lighting fireworks, but knowing the laws that govern fireworks in Georgia.
Consumer fireworks, the kind you can buy at roadside stands, are classified as 1.4G type explosives. 1.3G type explosives are the kind you’ll see at a Braves games or in Olympic Park — commercial fireworks. You can only purchase 1.3G fireworks with a permit, and any vendor who sells commercial fireworks is obligated to make sure the buyer has a license.
Officially, they’re defined as “any small fireworks devices containing restricted amounts of pyrotechnic composition, designed primarily to produce visible or audible effects by combustion” by Chapter 120-3-22 of the Safety Fire Commissioner.
Common consumer fireworks you can buy include:
- Wheels and Spinners
- Sky Flyers
- Crackle and Strobe
- Bottle Rockets
- Smoke and Punk
- Aerial Items (Cakes)
- Display Shells
- Sky Rockets
- Roman Candles
How Old Do I have to be to Shoot/Buy Fireworks in Georgia?
Georgia law states you must be 18 years or older to buy fireworks. Fireworks can only be sold in face-to-face transactions, which means you can not buy fireworks over the internet or phone in Georgia. Retailers are required to ask for government ID upon any sale of consumer fireworks.
You also have to be 18 to sell fireworks barring your permit. 16-17-year-olds may transport fireworks, but may not fire them or buy them.
What Times can I shoot Fireworks in Georgia?
The only times’ fireworks are allowed to be shot with no restrictions are between 10:00 AM and 11:59 PM. However, from 9:00 PM and 11:59 PM, your local noise ordinance laws come into effect — with exceptions on July 3rd, July 4th, January 1st, and December 31st.
Those local noise ordinances can affect when fireworks can be shot on non-holidays. Some counties and cities in Atlanta extend the curfew to 10 or 10:30 PM — you can read more about that down page.
January 1st is the only day now in Georgia where fireworks can be shot after midnight. The cutoff time is 1:00 AM.
You’ll need a special permit from your county on those dates if you want to blast fireworks and not break the local noise ordinance. Call your local county police station for more information on local noise ordinance laws.
Where Can I Shoot Fireworks in Georgia?
According to Georgia House Bill 419, fireworks cannot be shot within 100 yards of:
- Electric plants
- Water treatment 229 plants
- Waste-water treatment plant
- Gas Stations or any retail store which stores over 500 gallons of fuel
- Public air space, like a helipad or airport
- Public parks or registered historical sites
- Hospital or nursing home
Fireworks are also prohibited from being shot within the public right away of any public road. So intersections, yield signs, and traffic lights are off limits from being shot around for the casual pyro.
Can you Shoot Fireworks in a Drought in Georgia?
Whenever the Governor of Georgia declares a drought, those areas of concern are considered off-limits for fireworks during that period.
Can I be charged with using Fireworks “under the influence?”
This should go without saying, but the law strictly prohibits any person from using fireworks while under the influence of alcohol or any other controlled substance.
The police can check to see if you are under the influence while firing explosives in your front yard.
Do I need a permit to Sell Fireworks in Georgia?
Anyone wishing to sell fireworks in Georgia must obtain a permit from the Georgia Secretary of State. These permits cost $1,500 are have to be renewed on January 31st of every year.
These permits are only good per one location and are not transferable, so every location you open must have its own license.
Where Can I sell fireworks in Georgia?
Temporary fireworks stand you typically see on the side of the road need written permission from the landowner to sell there. Most counties and cities in Georgia require these temporary retail stands to operate strictly within a business zone, like a strip mall parking lot.
These stands must be within 1000 feet of a fire hydrant or a local fire station. Also, one person cannot operate more than two temporary fireworks stands at once.
Lastly, all firework retail stores must have a sign, at least 22 by 28 inches in size that reads this exactly:
“PLEASE CHECK YOUR LOCAL ORDINANCES PRIOR TO USING OR IGNITING CONSUMER FIREWORKS. PLEASE USE CONSUMER FIREWORKS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THEIR AFFIXED CAUTION AND WARNING LABELS. PLEASE BE A GOOD NEIGHBOR AND BE MINDFUL THAT UNANNOUNCED IGNITION NEAR SOME MILITARY VETERANS AND OTHER PERSONS AND NEAR SOME PETS CAN BE TRAUMATIC”
County by County Breakdown
Fulton County Firework Laws
Fulton County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level. However, certain cities have exceptions:
- Alpharetta allows residents to shoot fireworks until 10 PM on non-holidays.
- Milton residents are NOT allowed to use fireworks on any public road — not just right-a-ways.
- In Sandy Springs, sales are restricted to the commercial 2 zones in the city.
Cobb County Firework Laws
Cobb County requires a permit to light fireworks on non-holidays between 9 pm and midnight. Cobb County also allows for the use of fireworks on Cobb County school property so long as there’s a permit obtained by Cobb County Probate Court and Cobb County Fire Marshal’s Office.
DeKlab County Firework Laws
Specifically, the city of Brookhaven extended their firework curfew to 10:30 PM — which is 90 minutes longer than the state-mandated curfew on non-holidays at 9:00 PM. Outside of Brookhaven, Deklab follows the state laws on fireworks.
Gwinnett County Firework Laws
Gwinnett County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Forsyth County Firework Laws
Forsyth County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Cherokee County Firework Laws
Cherokee County residents are NOT allowed to shoot fireworks on public roads — not just right-a-ways. Outside of that, abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Paulding County Firework Laws
Paulding County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Bartow County Firework Laws
Bartow County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Clayton County Firework Laws
Clayton County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Henry County Firework Laws
Henry County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Rockdale County Firework Laws
Rockdale County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Fayette County Firework Laws
Fayette County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Walton County Firework Laws
Walton County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Douglas County Firework Laws
Douglas County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Hall County Firework Laws
Hall County abides by the Georgia state rules without any other exceptions on the county level.
Seth Bader is an Auto accident, Workers Compensation and Personal Injury Attorney who practices in Atlanta, Rome, Savannah, Norcross, Carrollton, Georgia. He graduated from Florida State University College of Law, and has been practicing law for 14 years. Seth Bader believes in fighting for the injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.