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TNT and state fire marshal urge collaboration between Nevada and California

TNT and state fire marshal urge collaboration between Nevada and California

TNT and state fire marshal urge collaboration between Nevada and California

National fireworks distributor TNT Fireworks has launched a campaign to stem the flow of illegal fireworks from Nevada to California and remind residents to “be responsible” when disposing of used fireworks during the Fourth of July holiday. .

As part of the campaign, TNT provided a report to State Fire Marshal Daniel Berlant offering ideas on how to address the continued sale and distribution of illegal fireworks from the Silver State.

Under TNT’s recommendations, which were endorsed by the fire marshal’s General Fireworks Advisory Committee, the Alabama-based company is proposing stricter regulations on the sale and transportation of fireworks across state lines and a collaboration closer between the officials of the two states.

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Fireworks companies and state officials pointed to fireworks warehouses just across the border in Nevada towns like Schurz, Pyramid Lake and Battle Mountain as easy sources of illegal fireworks for Northern Californians. According to a company news release, officials said the fireworks are frequently purchased at those stores, sometimes in massive quantities, and then resold in California and set off, raising concerns that they may be more powerful and lack the “Safe and Healthy” seal. California Fire Chief for Safety.

Seven fireworks stores in northwest Nevada (and six in Pahrump, just west of Las Vegas) sell class 1.4G consumer fireworks, which are federally approved but illegal in California, a state that has strict rules in part because explosives can “increase the risk of explosion.” threat of devastating wildfires across California,” according to Cal Fire.

The 1.4G designation, a shipping classification defined by the U.S. Department of Transportation, was once known as “ordinary” Class C fireworks: 1.4G refers to the hazard type, with 1 being an explosive; the dangerousness of the hazard, 4 considered “no significant hazard”; and G for a designation of the explosive, in this case a pyrotechnic that produces effects through a combination of heat, light, sound, gas and smoke, according to federal regulations.

In the past, fireworks stores in Pahrump, which are the city’s second largest revenue generator, according to TNT representative Dennis Revell, have been a cause for alarm due to the large quantities of fireworks being purchased at wholesale and transported to California.

Pahrump is a somewhat remote town, and the press release said each of the 38,000 residents would have to buy thousands of dollars’ worth of fireworks to cover sales made in Pahrump, where it is illegal to set off fireworks.

The company estimates that between 60% and 70% of illegal fireworks in the Golden State come from those 13 stores across the border.

A 2023-24 report from the San Francisco grand jury found that most of the explosions in the city were due to “fireworks that are illegal in California, but are for sale in the neighboring state of Nevada.”

TNT recommended in its report that an interstate compact and task force could help reduce the flow of illegal fireworks on I-80 and other westbound highways.

This year, at all of its booths, run by nonprofit and charitable groups, TNT will share brochures and other information with a QR code that customers can scan to learn effective disposal techniques after lighting their fireworks. The message, from TNT and the firefighters: “Let your fireworks take a bath!”

In other words, consumers are encouraged to have a bucket or container filled with water where fireworks can cool before throwing them away the next day. The public service campaign will also appear in cable television ads and on social media.

By submerging fireworks overnight in water in a non-combustible container (and ensuring they are cool to the touch before disposing of them), TNT and firefighters hope to reduce the number of fires started unintentionally in homes and open spaces.

In the past, to address dangerous fireworks, TNT supported Senate Bill 839 in 2007, which allows local jurisdictions to impose fines for possession or use of illegal fireworks, and made the “Nail’em” app available to Report illegal fireworks activities to authorities.

In 296 California neighborhoods where the sale of state-approved fireworks is legal, TNT generates $110 million in revenue for the more than 2,700 nonprofit groups they partner with during the Fourth of July season.

Fireworks regulations vary by capital region. For example, the sale and use of fireworks is fine in most of Sacramento County, including the city, as well as in Placer County and three of its Western Slope cities, and in Yolo County and in several of its incorporated cities, excluding Davis.

Earlier this year, Sacramento County supervisors tightened restrictions on when fireworks can be set off and increased fines for setting off fireworks in schoolyards and parks.

“We’re trying to be part of the solution,” Revell said.

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Elise Fisher is a summer reporting intern for The Sacramento Bee. A Capital Region native and long-time Bee reader, she currently studies at UC Berkeley. She has written for Cal’s newspaper, The Daily Californian, and will serve as editor in the fall.