Know the law before discharging fireworks in Morgantown

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Revelers in Morgantown are reminded about the safe legal use of fireworks this Fourth of July weekend.

City fire marshal Jason Quinn said the difference between state law and local ordinance might not be clear, especially for newcomers to the community.

“Even Though the state law does allow the discharge of fireworks,” Quinn said. ” Within the city limits they are still not permitted.”

Quinn said only “novelty” fireworks legal inside city limits- that means as long as it does not leave the ground it is legal in the city. Things like sparklers, snakes, waterfalls and smoke are legal. If it leaves the ground and explodes that’s a violation of the city ordinance.

“Any violation of the city ordinance is punishable by up to a $1,000 fine,” Quinn said.

Even using legal fireworks Quinn said they should be done away from vegetation, on a hard surface and a safe distance away from structures. Fireworks should never be used by children or people who are intoxicated. Having access to water near the site is also a good idea and never pick up or try to re-ignite a firework that fails to light.

“We ask that if you want to see a very good fireworks show go to the Hazel Ruby-McQuain Amphitheater,” Quinn said. “The city is doing a very large fireworks show this year.”

The Morgantown fireworks show is scheduled to begin at 10 p.m. Monday from the Hazel Ruby-McQuain Park.

A link to Morgantown Fire Code is here.