Chapter 9.40


9.40.010    Definitions.

9.40.020    Sale, possession or use prohibited.

9.40.030    Exceptions.

9.40.040    Applicability of state fireworks law.

9.40.050    Fireworks may be seized or destroyed by police.

9.40.060    Host liability.

9.40.070    Violation – Penalty.

9.40.010 Definitions.

As used in this chapter:

A. “Approved site” means an area approved by the fire chief or fire marshal and prepared in such a manner as to prevent the ignition and spread of fire and the escape of fire to adjoining property.

B. “Fireworks” means and includes:

1. Any combustible or explosive composition or any substance or combination of substances or articles prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or an audible effect by combustion, explosion, deflagration or detonation, whether manufactured, homemade or improvised;

2. Fireworks classified by the State Fire Marshal as “dangerous fireworks” and as “safe and sane fireworks” pursuant to Health and Safety Code Sections 12561 and 12562;

3. Any pyrotechnic device for which the State Fire Marshal requires a license to manufacture, sell, transport or operate; and

4. Firecrackers, torpedoes, skyrockets, Roman candles, cherry bombs, sparklers, chasers, snakes or other fireworks of like or similar construction and any fireworks containing any explosive or flammable compound or substance.

This definition of fireworks does not include devices that are: (a) identified in Health and Safety Code Section 12540 which are not subject to the state fireworks law (Division 11, Part 2, of the Health and Safety Code, Section 12500 et seq.); (b) classified as exempt fireworks pursuant to Health and Safety Code Section 12565; (c) capable of making an audible popping sound and/or propelling confetti or streamers into the air when the device is twisted or a string is pulled, or a mild audible popping sound when dropped on the ground, provided such devices are not subject to the state fireworks law; or (d) that are classified as model rocket engines pursuant to Health and Safety Code Section 12565.

C. “Host” means a person who invites others to gather on a parcel of property that the person owns, possesses, or controls, or who organizes, supervises, officiates, conducts, controls, or is otherwise in charge of the activity on the property. A governmental entity is expressly excluded from the meaning of the word “host.”

D. “Strictly liable” means liability for a wrongful act irrespective of such person’s intent, knowledge, negligence or lack thereof in committing the wrongful act. (Ord. 2151 § 3(A), 2023; Ord. 2146 §§ 1(A), (B), 2023; Ord. 1794 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1131 § 2, 1983; 1960 code § 9.30)

9.40.020 Sale, possession or use prohibited.

It is unlawful for any person to give away, sell, offer for sale, solicit the sale of, possess, purchase, use, ignite, explode, fire, or otherwise discharge any fireworks within the City. (Ord. 2065 § 1(A), 2018; Ord. 1794 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1131 § 2, 1983; 1960 code § 9.31)

9.40.030 Exceptions.

The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to the following:

A. A public display of fireworks by the City at an approved site. The City may contract with a licensed pyrotechnic operator to conduct the display. Any public display shall be performed in accordance with the requirements of the Health and Safety Code and the rules and regulations of the State Fire Marshal.

B. A public fireworks display or the use of fireworks for television, film, theater, or movie production, provided a permit therefor is first secured from the City.

A permit from the City may be secured by application to the city fire chief, who shall make a recommendation to the City Council for approval or disapproval and stating whether the applicant has secured all appropriate licenses from the State Fire Marshal for the type of fireworks to be used. The City Council may grant or deny such application for permit based upon the evidence before it, and may impose conditions upon the permit requiring the applicant to obtain all necessary and appropriate permits and licenses from the State Fire Marshal before engaging in the display or use applied for.

C. The use by railroad or other transportation agencies for signal purposes or illumination by flares or fuses.

D. The sale or use of blank cartridges for theatrical purposes, athletic events, or military ceremonials. (Ord. 2065 § 1(A), 2018; Ord. 1794 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1131 § 2, 1983; 1960 code § 9.32)

9.40.040 Applicability of state fireworks law.

This chapter does not supersede the state fireworks law, but is intended to supplement the provisions of Division 11, Part 2, of the Health and Safety Code (Section 12500 et seq.) as well as the administrative regulations adopted pursuant to that law. (Ord. 1794 § 1, 2006)

9.40.050 Fireworks may be seized or destroyed by police.

Any member of the Livermore police department or the Livermore-Pleasanton fire department shall seize, take, remove or cause to be removed and arrange for the destruction at the expense of the owner of all fireworks offered or exposed for sale, stored, possessed, transported, or otherwise in violation of this chapter. (Ord. 1794 § 1, 2006)

9.40.060 Host liability.

A. It is unlawful for a host to allow a parcel of property that the host owns, possesses, or controls to be used in a manner prohibited by LMC 9.40.020, whether the violation is caused by the host or by any other person.

B. A host is strictly liable for any violation of LMC 9.40.020 that occurs during a gathering on property that the host owns, possesses, or controls, or in the public right-of-way immediately adjacent to the parcel of property that the host owns, possesses, or controls.

C. Notwithstanding the prohibitions in subsections A and B of this section, the provisions of this section shall not apply to a host who initiates contact with law enforcement or fire officials to assist in removing any person from the property or terminating the activity in order to comply with this chapter, if the request for assistance is made before any other person contacts law enforcement or fire officials to complain about the violation of this chapter. (Ord. 2046 § 1(C), 2023)

9.40.070 Violation – Penalty.

Persons violating this chapter shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $500.00. In lieu of criminal penalties, violations may also be handled administratively pursuant to Chapter 1.20 LMC. Administrative penalties may include administrative fines and recovery costs for staff time and city resources expended to enforce this chapter and obtain compliance. (Ord. 2151 § 3(B), 2023; Ord. 2146 § 1(D), 2023; Ord. 2065 § 1(A), 2018; Ord. 1794 § 1, 2006. Formerly 9.40.060)