Fireworks Information/Ordinance/Safety

This is the Houlton Town Ordinance in regards to Fireworks:



  1. The definitions of terms pertaining to Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks or activities associated with Consumer fireworks, which includes but are not limited to the sale or display of Consumer Fireworks, as used in this ordinance, are defined by Section 1. 8 MRSA 221-A.


  1. The manufacture of any types of fireworks is prohibited within the jurisdictional boundaries of the Town of Houlton.


  1. Sale, Storage, and Distribution. The retail sale, storage and/or wholesale distribution of Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks are permitted within the jurisdictional boundaries of the Town of Houlton, Maine, subject to Section 5.8 MRSA 223, and Houlton ordinances.


3.1 Buildings. All buildings and property used for the possession, storage and sale of Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks shall be in accordance with the applicable Houlton building codes and ordinances. All buildings used for the possession, storage and sale of Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks shall be protected by a automatic sprinkler system in accordance with the current edition of NFPA 13 and monitored by a central station fire alarm system.


  1. USE: Commercial Fireworks Display.   Any firm, partnership or corporation that commercially discharges, shoots, explodes or displays Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks in the Town of Houlton is required to do so in accordance with NFPA 1123 and is subject to the Department of Public Safety Office of the State Fire Marshal Chapter 25: “Rules For The Display of Fireworks”


5    USE: Non-Commercial Use of Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks. To protect the lives and property of its citizens concerning the possession and use of Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks in Populated Areas, the Town of Houlton recognizes the potential for fire and injury and the history of fire and injury in regards to the use of Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks, therefore It shall be unlawful for any person, firm, partnership or corporation to use, display or explode any Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks within the Town of Houlton.


  • Exceptions;
  1. Use is permitted if on a lot sized in excess of 1 acre, either owned by the user of the fireworks or with permission of the land owner, and discharged at a minimum of 300 feet from neighboring residences or structures, and 100 feet from wooded areas.
  2. The use and display of sparklers including morning glories, paper and plastic caps is permitted.



  • Time of Use. Non Commercial use of Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks shall not be permitted between 10 PM and 8:00 AM. Exceptions: Non-Commercial use and Commercial use of Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks shall not be permitted on New Year’s Eve between 2:00 AM and 8:00 AM and on July 4th between 11:00 PM and 8:00 AM.
  • Public Safety. Use may not take place within 300 feet of a public gathering consisting of 25 or more people, or on any town owned land.
  • No peron under the age of 21 may display or explode any Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks within the Town of Houlton.
  • Fire Conditions. No person may explode any Consumer Fireworks or Fireworks when their exists a “High” risk of forest fire as displayed at the Houlton Fire Department or on the Maine forest Service web site:
  • Notification. Persons discharging Fireworks or Consumer Fireworks shall contact the Houlton Fire Department 532-2287 prior to any such discharge.


6   Other Agencies.   Nothing in this ordinance shall be construed to restrict or limit any other authority granted by state law. All requirements in this ordinance are in addition to any other state and federal regulations.


  1. Penalty. Any person who uses Consumer Fireworks or Fireworks in the Town of Houlton in violation of this ordinance shall receive a citation, the penalty for which shall be not less than $100. Each day, or each offense, any violation of any provisions of this Code shall continue shall constitute a separate offense in addition to the applicable civil penalty.


  1. Seizure and Disposal. The Town may seize Consumer Fireworks and Fireworks used in violation of this ordinance. Upon conviction of the person from who the Consumer Fireworks or Fireworks were seized, the fireworks shall be forfeited to the Town. Upon forfeiture, seized Consumer Fireworks or Fireworks shall be forwarded to the State for disposal.


Here is the guidelines from the Fire Marshal’s Office:


FIREWORKS SAFETY NOTICE The following recommendations are offered to use fireworks safely by the Office of State Fire Marshal and the Maine Forest Service

• A person may use consumer fireworks only on that persons property or on the property of a person who has consented to that use of fireworks on that property.
 • Consumer fireworks may be used between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. except on the following dates when they may be used between 9:00 a.m. and 12:30 a.m. the following day: o July 4th o December 31st, and o The weekends immediately before and after July 4th and December 31st
 • Users, and those in possession of consumer fireworks must be 21 years of age.
 • Set off fireworks outdoors in a clear area, away from houses, dry leaves, or grass and other flammable materials.
 • Keep a bucket of water nearby for emergencies, do not handle fireworks that fail to go off.  Use a long- handled shovel to scoop up the firework and immerse it in the bucket of water.
 • Do not try to relight or handle malfunctioning fireworks. Soak them with water and throw them away. 
 • Be sure other people and children are out of range before lighting fireworks.
 • Never light fireworks in a container, especially a glass or metal container.
 • Keep unused fireworks away from firing areas.
 • Always use fireworks according to the manufacturer’s directions and guidelines.
 • Always use eye, ear, and hand personal protective equipment.
 • Observe all local laws and ordinances.
 • Never have any portion of your body directly over a firework while lighting.
 • When use of fireworks is done, continue to watch the area of use to be sure that all fireworks debris is out and not smoldering or hot.
 • Search any forested area adjacent to and downwind of the ignition site looking for hot or smoldering debris. Scan the forest canopy, as well as the ground. If a wildfire occurs as a result of negligence, then you may be responsible for fire suppression costs.
 • In case of emergency, dial 911.


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