Chapter 8.75
FIREWORKS AND SKY LANTERNS

(Effective March 14, 2023)

Sections:

8.75.010    Purpose and construction.

8.75.020    Definitions.

8.75.030    Sky lanterns prohibited.

8.75.035    Publication of declaration of high fire hazard.

8.75.040    Prohibited acts – Exceptions.

8.75.045    Failure to clean up fireworks waste.

8.75.050    Public display of fireworks in the county.

8.75.060    Seizure of fireworks.

8.75.070    Violations and penalties.

8.75.080    Enforcement.

8.75.090    Severability.

8.75.100    Effective date.

8.75.110    Disclaimer of liability.

8.75.010 Purpose and construction.

(1) This chapter supplements Chapter 70.77 RCW, and shall be construed in connection with that law and any regulations or rules issued pursuant to that law.

(2) It is expressly the purpose of this chapter to provide for and promote the health, safety and welfare of the general public, and not to create or otherwise establish or designate any particular class or group of persons who will or should be specially protected or benefited by the terms of this chapter.

(3) This chapter shall be liberally construed to carry out its broad purposes, allowing the local fire official to determine permissible consumer fireworks within their region of responsibility within Jefferson County.

(4) Reference to the Revised Code of Washington (RCW) in this chapter is to the provision of the RCW as currently adopted or as may be amended in the future. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.020 Definitions.

In construing provisions of this chapter, except where otherwise plainly declared or clearly apparent from the context, words used in this chapter shall be given their common and ordinary meaning and in addition, the following definitions shall apply:

(1) “Agricultural and wildlife fireworks” has the same meaning as in RCW 70.77.141.

(2) “Consumer fireworks” has the same meaning as in RCW 70.77.136.

(3) “County fire marshal” means the person designated by the board of county commissioners pursuant to RCW 43.44.050(1)(b) with the police power to investigate the origin, cause, circumstances, and extent of loss of all fires within unincorporated areas of Jefferson County.

(4) “Declaration of high fire hazard” means a declaration by the county fire marshal or their designee, or a local fire official or their designee, that a high fire hazard exists within their region of responsibility.

(5) “Display fireworks” has the same meaning as in RCW 70.77.131.

(6) “Fire hazard” means the accumulation of combustible materials in such a condition as to be readily ignited and in such a quantity as to create a hazard from fire to nearby structures, forest areas, life and property.

(7) “Fireworks” has the same meaning as in RCW 70.77.126.

(8) “Fireworks waste” means any waste remaining after the discharge, manufacture, sale, storage, or transportation of fireworks, including, but not limited to, ashes, garbage, and rubbish.

(9) “High fire hazard” means a period of hot, dry weather accompanied by low fuel moistures, where fires start quickly, spread furiously, and burn intensely and are difficult to control unless they are successfully attacked when the fires are small. It is during this period that wildland fires can be expected, and fire growth will be accelerated.

(10) “Local fire official” means a fire chief of a fire district wholly or partially within Jefferson County or their designee.

(11) “Public display of fireworks” has the same meaning as in RCW 70.77.160.

(12) “Region of responsibility” means the fire district wholly or partially within Jefferson County for a local fire official, or the county as a whole for the county fire marshal.

(13) “Sky lantern” has the same meaning as in RCW 76.04.005(19).

(14) “Special effects” has the same meaning as in RCW 70.77.136.

(15) “Vehicle” means every device capable of being moved upon a highway and in, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway. “Vehicle” shall include but shall not be limited to automobiles, motorcycles, trucks, buses, motorized recreational vehicles, campers, travel trailers, and boat trailers. “Vehicle” does not include devices moved by human or animal power, or used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.

(16) “Vessel” means every species of watercraft or other mobile artificial contrivance, powered or unpowered, intended to be used for transporting people or goods on water or for floating marine construction or repair and which does not exceed 200 feet in length.

(17) “Wildland fire” means any nonstructure fire that occurs in vegetation or natural fuels and includes fires originating from an unplanned ignition and unauthorized and accidental human caused fires. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.030 Sky lanterns prohibited.

It is unlawful for any person to ignite, light or launch any sky lantern within unincorporated Jefferson County. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.035 Publication of declaration of high fire hazard.

The county fire marshal and each local fire official shall publish the declaration of high fire hazard in local media outlets for public review. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.040 Prohibited acts – Exceptions.

(1) Limits on Dates and Times Consumer Fireworks May Be Sold or Discharged. The county adopts the dates and times consumer fireworks may be sold or discharged under RCW 70.77.395. A chart showing what is currently authorized under RCW 70.77.395 for purchase, use or discharge of consumer fireworks is below:

Sale of Consumer Fireworks, as Provided in RCW 70.77.311 

Date

From

To

June 28 each year

Noon

11:00 p.m.

June 29 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

July 1 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

July 2 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

July 3 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

July 4 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

December 27 each year

Noon

11:00 p.m.

December 28 each year

Noon

11:00 p.m.

December 29 each year

Noon

11:00 p.m.

December 30 each year

Noon

11:00 p.m.

December 31 each year

Noon

11:00 p.m.

Use and Discharge of Consumer Fireworks, as provided in RCW 70.77.311:

Date

From

To

June 28 each year

Noon

11:00 p.m.

June 29 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

July 1 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

July 2 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

July 3 each year

9:00 a.m.

11:00 p.m.

July 4 each year

9:00 a.m.

Midnight

December 31 each year

Noon

Midnight

January 1 each year

Midnight

1:00 p.m.

The above chart shall be updated to be consistent with the requirements of RCW 70.77.395, if that section is amended.

(2) Limits on the manufacture, sale, transportation, discharge, storage or use of fireworks is prohibited during a declaration of high fire hazard. Except as permitted in this chapter, the discharge, manufacture, sale, storage, or transportation of fireworks is prohibited during a declaration of high fire hazard declared in a region of responsibility; provided, however, that this restriction shall not apply:

(a) To the storage or transportation of consumer fireworks;

(b) To the use by railroads or other transportation agencies for signal or illumination purposes;

(c) To the use of agricultural and wildlife fireworks;

(d) To the use of devices for vegetation management or wildfire firefighting tactics;

(e) To the use of flares or fuses in connection with the operation of vehicles or vessels for signal purposes, or use by others for emergency signal purposes, or illumination for use in forest protection activities, or for those other uses described in RCW 70.77.311;

(f) To the use of special effects when used as an integral part of a theatrical production;

(g) To the transportation of fireworks through the county as part of interstate commerce; or

(h) To the public display of fireworks by persons with the appropriate state licenses. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.045 Failure to clean up fireworks waste.

Failure to clean up fireworks waste is prohibited under this chapter. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.050 Public display of fireworks in the county.

(1) Public display of fireworks in unincorporated Jefferson County is prohibited, unless an application has been approved for any permit required under JCC 8.20.030 (entertainment, amusement or assemblies permit), JCC 18.20.380 (temporary outdoor use permit) or JCC 18.20.390 (temporary festival conditional use), after a consultation with local fire officials consistent with RCW 70.77.260 prior to approval.

(2) A public display of fireworks shall be of such character, and so located, discharged or fired in a manner that is not hazardous to property or injurious to any person, as determined by either the fire marshal or a local fire official.

(3) Every operator of a public display of fireworks shall first obtain a state license pursuant to RCW 70.77.355. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.060 Seizure of fireworks.

Pursuant to RCW 70.77.435, any fireworks which are illegally sold, offered for sale, used, discharged, possessed, or transported in violation of the provisions of this chapter or the rules or regulations of the chief of the Washington State patrol, through the director of fire protection, are subject to seizure by the chief of the Washington State patrol, through the director of fire protection, or his or her deputy, or by state agencies or local governments having general law enforcement authority. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.070 Violations and penalties.

Pursuant to RCW 36.32.120(7), this chapter declares certain acts to be civil violations and establishes civil enforcement procedures and penalties, and also declares certain acts to be misdemeanors.

(1) Misdemeanor. Any person, firm, corporation or association violating or failing to comply with any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be punished by a fine in a sum not exceeding $1,000 dollars or by imprisonment in the jail for a period not to exceed 90 days or by both such fine and jail.

(2) Civil Infraction.

(a) Any person who violates any provision of this chapter may be issued a notice of infraction. The penalty for an infraction issued to a person who violates any provision of this chapter shall be $1,000 and $2,000 for any subsequent violation of this chapter. For each violation of a continuing nature, each day shall constitute a separate infraction, subject to a daily penalty.

(b) A notice of infraction represents a determination that a violation has been committed. The determination will be final unless contested as provided in this chapter.

(c) The Infraction Rules for Courts of Limited Jurisdiction (IRLJ), as they exist now or may be amended in the future, apply to the processing and adjudication of civil infractions under this chapter. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.080 Enforcement.

(1) Particularly with the discharge of consumer fireworks in violation of this chapter, public awareness and voluntary compliance efforts should be used prior to enforcement under this chapter.

(2) The county sheriff or their designee has the discretion to enforce this chapter. This chapter does not create a duty on the part of the county, the county sheriff, the county fire marshal, or local fire officials to enforce violations of this chapter. Decisions about whether and how to enforce this chapter shall be made in conjunction with the county prosecuting attorney or their designee.

(3) The county sheriff or their designee may consult with the county fire marshal or a local fire official in enforcement of this chapter. The county sheriff or their designee is authorized to:

(a) Issue citations to or arrest without warrant persons violating the provisions of this chapter;

(b) Serve and execute all warrants, citations and other process issued by the courts;

(c) Send by certified mail any warrant, citation or other process to the last known place of residence of the person alleged to have violated this chapter, which shall be deemed as personal service upon the person alleged to have violated this chapter.

(4) This chapter as well as permits or decisions issued under it may be enforced through the provisions of JCC Title 19, Code Compliance. The county sheriff is the “director” for purposes of JCC 19.10.015(19). The county sheriff shall coordinate with the code compliance coordinator on decisions to enforce this chapter under JCC Title 19.

(5) Enforcement through this chapter is not exclusive and additional enforcement mechanisms may exist, which may include filing civil actions in courts of competent jurisdiction under other applicable laws.

(6) The county prosecuting attorney may at any time bring such additional injunctive, declaratory, criminal, or other actions as are necessary to enforce the provisions of this chapter.

(7) Nothing in this title shall be interpreted to mean that civil and criminal remedies for the same violations may not be brought simultaneously. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.090 Severability.

If any provision of this chapter is declared unconstitutional or the applicability thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the constitutionality of the remainder of the ordinance codified in this chapter and the applicability thereof to other persons and circumstance shall not be affected thereby. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.100 Effective date.

The ordinance codified in this chapter and the rules, regulations, provisions, requirements, orders and matters established and adopted pursuant to the ordinance codified in this chapter shall take effect and be in full force and effect one year after the date of adoption. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]

8.75.110 Disclaimer of liability.

Nothing contained in this chapter is intended to be nor shall be construed to create or form the basis for any liability on the part of the county, its officers, employees or agents, or any local fire official, for any injury or damage resulting from the failure of anyone to comply with the provisions of this chapter, or by reason or in consequence of the implementation or enforcement pursuant to this chapter, or by reason of any action or inaction on the part of the county related in any manner to the enforcement of this chapter by its officers, employees or agents. [Ord. 3-22 § 1 (App. A)]