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In much of California, you are not allowed to use your own fireworks on the 4th of July (or at any other time of year).

This is confusing and surprising for many people because not all fireworks are illegal in California. California fireworks laws distinguish between "dangerous" fireworks and "safe and sane" fireworks.

Dangerous fireworks may only be bought and used by people who hold special fireworks-display licenses. But ordinary citizens are allowed to buy safe and sane fireworks between June 28 and July 6--at least under California state law.

The problem is that many California cities have chosen to enact their own stricter rules about fireworks. Right now, less than 300 cities or other communities in California permit safe and sane fireworks. The rest have chosen to ban them.

Communities that do NOT permit even safe and sane fireworks around the 4th of July include Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Culver City, Santa Monica, Pasadena and unincorporated Los Angeles County.

Cities that DO permit (safe and sane) fireworks include Alhambra, Compton, Gardena, Hawthorne, Monterey Park and Palmdale. (A complete list can be found at the website of the California Fireworks Newswire.)

With experts predicting an unusually severe fire season in Southern California, local police and fire departments are likely to take fireworks law enforcement extra seriously this 4th of July. Do your research and stay out of trouble!

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Gerald Schwab, Jr.

CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY & DUI ATTORNEY SERVING ALL OF CALIFORNIA

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Law Office of Gerald Schwab, Jr.
Fresno Criminal Defense Attorney
5588 N Palm Ave,
Fresno, CA 93704
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