Every year around the Fourth of July, 9-1-1 operators are inundated with calls regarding fireworks. The majority of these calls are non-emergency related, but tie up the 9-1-1 system, potentially delaying an emergency call from getting through.
The Washington State Fire Marshal’s Office provided the chart below, which was produced with input from a number of Emergency Dispatch Centers. It can be used as a guide when determining whether to call 9-1-1 regarding fireworks.
Who do you call to report illegal fireworks or suspicious activities involving fireworks?
|Incident or Question?||Call 9-1-1?||If not a call to 9-1-1 who should I call?|
|Are fireworks legal within the city or county I live in?||No||If fireworks are illegal in your jurisdiction, call (425) 775-3000, the non-emergency phone number for south Snohomish County. Fireworks are illegal within the city limits of Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood, Mill Creek, Edmonds and Woodway, among several others. There are some restrictions in unincorporated areas, which you can read about here.|
|I want to report fireworks violations:
||No||Fireworks violations may be reported by calling the police department’s non-emergency phone number: (425) 775-3000 .|
|I have a firework related injury from using fireworks, example:
|A fire has started from the use of fireworks.||Yes
|The neighbor is using illegal fireworks (M-80’s).||Yes
|Or the local police department’s non-emergency phone number: (425) 775-3000.|
|Where do I get a Fireworks Stand License from?||No||Call the Office of the State Fire Marshal at (360) 596-3913 or check the internet.|
|I have old consumer fireworks I want to get rid of.||No||Call the local police or fire department’s non-emergency phone number: (425) 775-3000.|
|I have found a short piece of pipe with a fuse coming out of it.||Yes
|Leave the device where it is and do not pick it up.|
|There is a storage container at the neighbor’s house loaded with fireworks.||No||Call the local police or fire department’s non-emergency phone number: (425) 775-3000.|
|My next door neighbor is making fireworks in his garage.||Yes
Reporting illegal activities or use of fireworks to 9-1-1 should be limited to those instances when the activity is in progress and poses a threat or danger to others or yourself.
Remember the 3 B’s of Fireworks
- Be Prepared—Have water nearby and put pets indoors
- Be Safe—Only adults should light fireworks
- Be Responsible—Clean up fireworks debris