Chapter 9.22


9.22.010    Findings.

9.22.020    Purpose and scope.

9.22.030    Definitions.

9.22.040    Possession, sale or use of certain fireworks unlawful.

9.22.045    Discharge of consumer fireworks prohibited near forests and parks.

9.22.050    Dates of permitted sale.

9.22.060    Limitation on use of fireworks.

9.22.070    Display fireworks and special use.

9.22.075    Terms and conditions for issuance of a permit for fireworks display and special use.

9.22.080    Nonprohibited commodities and acts.

9.22.082    Retail permits limited.

9.22.085    Permit fee.

9.22.090    Retail outlets permitted.

9.22.100    Qualified applicants for permits.

9.22.110    Retail sale of fireworks – Locations.

9.22.120    Terms and conditions – Retail sale permit.

9.22.130    Reserved.

9.22.140    Emergency fireworks ban sale and use.

9.22.150    Enforcement.

9.22.010 Findings.

The sale, purchase, possession or use of fireworks that fly, explode, or travel more than one foot into the air or more than six feet on the ground within the city of Washougal, Washington, constitutes a public nuisance, and violators of this chapter may be subject to civil or criminal enforcement, or any other remedy allowed by law. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.020 Purpose and scope.

(1) In order to protect the public’s health, safety, and welfare, this chapter regulates fireworks within the city of Washougal.

(2) The city of Washougal reserves the right to utilize and enforce any applicable state fireworks statute or regulation.

(3) Any duty created by this chapter is a general duty, running in favor of the public. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.030 Definitions.

(1) “Chaser” means a small paper or cardboard tube that travels along the ground upon ignition. A whistling effect or other noise is often produced. The explosive composition used to create the noise may not exceed 50 milligrams.

(2) “Consumer fireworks” means any small firework device designed to produce visible effects by combustion and which must comply with the construction, chemical composition, and labeling regulations of the United States Consumer Products Safety Commission, as set forth in 16 C.F.R. Parts 1500 and 1507 and including some small devices designed to produce audible effects, such as whistling devices, ground devices containing 50 milligrams or less of explosive materials, and aerial devices containing 130 milligrams or less of explosive materials and classified as fireworks containing UN0336 by the United States Department of Transportation at 49 C.F.R. Section 172.101 as of the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter, and not including fused set pieces containing components which together exceed 50 milligrams of salute powder. Consumer fireworks include, but are not limited to, fireworks devices commonly known as the following: sparklers, morning glory, ground spinners, multi-aerials, helicopters, parachutes, cone and fountains, Roman candles, wheels, novelties, snakes, cakes and smoke devices.

(3) “Firecracker” or “salute” means a small paper-wrapped or cardboard tube containing not more than 50 milligrams of pyrotechnic composition. Upon ignition, noise and a flash of light is produced. External dimensions shall not exceed one and one-half inches in length or one-quarter inch in diameter.

(4) “Forest lands” means any unimproved lands which have enough trees, standing or down, or flammable material, to constitute a fire menace to life or property. Brush and grass areas may be considered forest lands when such areas are adjacent to or intermingled with areas supporting tree growth.

(5) “Missile-type rocket” means a device similar to a skyrocket in size, composition and effect that uses fins rather than a stick for guidance and stability.

(6) “Mortar-type firework” means a device including a shell or shells, typically round or cylindrical, that is launched by a lift charge and uses a mortar tube.

(7) “Person” means and includes any individual, firm, partnership, joint venture, association, concern, corporation, estate, trust, business trust, receiver, syndicate or any other group or combination acting as a unit.

(8) “Public display of fireworks” means an entertainment feature where the public is admitted or permitted to view the display or discharge of special fireworks.

(9) “Pyrotechnics” means any combination of chemical elements or chemical compounds capable of burning independently of oxygen of the atmosphere and designed and intended to produce an audible, visual, mechanical, or thermal effect as a necessary part of a motion picture, radio or television production, theatrical, or opera.

(10) “Pyrotechnic operator” includes any individual who by experience and training has demonstrated the required skill and ability for safely setting up and discharging public displays of special fireworks.

(11) “Special fireworks” means and includes any fireworks designed primarily for exhibition display which produce visible or audible effects and are classified as such by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives or in the regulations of the U.S. Department of Transportation and designated as UN0335 1.3g.

(12) “Skyrocket” means a tube not exceeding one-half inch (12.5 millimeters) inside diameter that may contain up to 20 grams of pyrotechnic composition. Skyrockets contain a wooden stick for guidance and stability and rise into the air upon ignition. A burst of color or noise or both is produced at the height of flight. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.040 Possession, sale or use of certain fireworks unlawful.

(1) Whether permitted by state law or not, it shall be unlawful for any person to sell, store, offer for sale, expose for sale, use, possess, fire or discharge firecrackers, salutes, chasers, skyrockets and missile-type rockets and mortar-type fireworks, or those fireworks not specifically listed, that fly, explode, or travel more than one foot into the air or more than six feet on the ground in the city, except as allowed by this chapter. All lawful consumer fireworks must bear the California State Fire Marshal “Safe and Sane” seal as follows:

or an equivalent “Safe and Sane” marking approved by the fire chief of the Camas-Washougal fire department.

(2) The sale, transportation, possession or discharge of fireworks not marked with the manufacturer’s license number and the State Fire Marshal’s classification, as required by Chapter 70.77 RCW, is prohibited. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.045 Discharge of consumer fireworks prohibited near forests and parks.

Notwithstanding any provision of state law, it shall be unlawful to use or discharge consumer fireworks within any parks within the city or within 300 feet from any forest lands. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.050 Dates of permitted sale.

It shall be unlawful to sell or purchase consumer fireworks within the city at any time other than from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. on each day from July 2nd through the July 4th, and from 12:00 noon to 11:00 p.m. on each day from December 29th through December 31st of each year. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.060 Limitation on use of fireworks.

It shall be unlawful to use or discharge those lawful consumer fireworks described in WMC 9.22.040 within the city at any time other than on July 4th from 9:00 a.m. to midnight and December 31st from 6:00 p.m. to January 1st at 1:00 a.m.; provided, that this prohibition shall not apply to duly authorized public displays of the city, state or as permitted by and under regulations adopted by the State Fire Marshal. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.070 Display fireworks and special use.

(1) Public display fireworks may be authorized by permit issued by the city pursuant to RCW 70.77.260 including standards, obligations, and duties set forth in Chapter 70.77 RCW and this chapter.

(2) Use of fireworks by religious organizations or for other specific purposes set forth in RCW 70.77.311 is permitted on an approved date and an approved location pursuant to a permit.

(3) Use of fireworks for the production of motion pictures, theatricals and operas is permitted on an approved date and an approved location pursuant to a permit. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.075 Terms and conditions for issuance of a permit for fireworks display and special use.

(1) Application to put on a public display of fireworks and/or special use shall be made to the fire chief or designee. The application shall be made at least 10 days prior to the event.

(2) The application shall be made on forms provided by the Washington State Director of Fire Protection and include the following information:

(a) The name of the sponsor if different than the applicant.

(b) The date the display is to be held.

(c) The exact location of the display.

(d) The name and license number of the pyrotechnic operator who is to supervise discharge of the fireworks and the name of at least one experienced assistant.

(e) The number of set pieces, shells (specify single or multiple break), and other items.

(f) The manner and place of storage of such fireworks prior to the display.

(g) A diagram of the grounds on which the display is to be held showing the point at which the fireworks are to be discharged, the location of all buildings and highways, the lines behind which the audience will be restrained, the location of all nearby trees, telegraph or telephone or other lines of communication, or other overhead obstruction.

(h) Documentary proof of commercial general liability insurance naming the city of Washougal as an additional insured.

(3) City council hereby delegates to the fire chief of the Camas-Washougal fire department or designee the authority to investigate applications for permits to have a public fireworks display and/or special use. The fire chief or designee shall make an investigation as to whether the display and/or special use as proposed will be of such character and will be so located that it may be hazardous or dangerous to any person or property, and shall, in the exercise of reasonable discretion, grant or deny the application, subject to such reasonable conditions, if any, as may be prescribed.

(4) If a permit for a public display of fireworks and/or special use is granted, the sale, possession and use of fireworks is lawful for that purpose only and is nontransferable.

(5) Orders denying or revoking permits shall be governed by the appeal process in Chapter 15.12 WMC. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.080 Nonprohibited commodities and acts.

(1) The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to any explosive or flammable compound, blasting caps or similar items used for industrial purposes, or to any blank cartridges for use by persons for bona fide ceremonial purposes, athletic or sports events or military ceremonials or demonstrations.

(2) This chapter shall not be construed so as to prohibit the use of torpedoes, flares, or fuses by motor vehicles, railroads or other transportation agencies for signal purposes.

(3) This chapter shall not be construed so as to prohibit the assembling, compounding, use or display of fireworks of whatever nature by any person engaged in the production of motion pictures, theatricals or operas when such person possesses a valid permit.

(4) This chapter does not prohibit any manufacturer, wholesaler, dealer or jobber having a license and a permit, if a permit is required by this chapter, from selling fireworks to a person having a license and a permit for public displays of fireworks and/or special use. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.082 Retail permits limited.

No person, firm or corporation, acting as principal, shall receive more than one permit for the retail sale of fireworks during any one calendar year. The maximum number of permits, which may be issued pursuant to this chapter, for the retail sale of common fireworks from roadside stands shall be six. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.085 Permit fee.

To cover administrative costs for permit processing and inspection, the permit fee, for each permit required, shall be $100.00. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.090 Retail outlets permitted.

A permit granted pursuant to this chapter shall entitle the permittee to maintain only one retail outlet. All permits issued pursuant thereto shall be used only by the designated permittee and shall not be transferable. Any transfer or purported transfer of such permit is a violation of this chapter. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.100 Qualified applicants for permits.

A fireworks permit shall be issued only to applicants who meet the following qualifications:

(1) Nonprofit charitable corporations organized and existing primarily for veteran, patriotic, charitable or civic betterment purposes; and

(2) The city council shall have the authority to investigate, review and deny the status of an applicant corporation or association.

(3) Orders denying or revoking status shall be governed by the appeal process in Chapter 15.12 WMC. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.110 Retail sale of fireworks – Locations.

The retail sale of common fireworks shall be permitted only from:

(1) Permanent buildings used for no other purpose than the importation, storage, wholesaling and/or retailing of fireworks; provided, that:

(a) Such structure shall be approved by the building official and fire chief of the city to conform with the appropriate codes applicable; and

(b) The use of such structure shall conform to zoning, health, fire, safety and other applicable ordinances and regulations.

(2) Temporary roadside stands; provided, that:

(a) Such stands shall be used for no other purpose than the retail sale of common fireworks; and

(b) Such stands shall conform to the standards set forth in this subsection:

(i) No fireworks stands shall be located within 50 feet of any other building.

(ii) Temporary fireworks stands need not comply with the provisions of the building code; provided, however, that all stands shall be constructed in a manner to protect the safety of attendants and patrons, and stands shall be wired according to the city code.

(iii) Each stand must have at least two exits.

(iv) No fireworks stand shall be located closer than 600 feet to any other fireworks stand.

(v) All weeds and combustible material shall be cleared from the location of the stand to a distance of at least 25 feet surrounding the stand.

(vi) No smoking signs, in a form and of the size approved by the fire department, shall be prominently displayed on each fireworks stand.

(vii) Each fireworks stand must have an adult in attendance and in charge thereof while the stand is being used for the sale of fireworks.

(viii) All unsold stock and accompanying litter shall be removed from the location no later than 12:00 p.m. on July 6th of each year.

(ix) Each retail fireworks location shall have not less than two approved water-type fire extinguishers of not less than two-and-one-half-gallon capacity or equivalent.

(x) Smoking and also the discharge of fireworks are not permitted within 25 feet of any stand or building in which fireworks are sold at retail. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.120 Terms and conditions – Retail sale permit.

A permit for retail sale of common fireworks shall be issued only upon the following terms and conditions:

(1) The applicant shall have or shall secure a license issued by the state authorizing the holder thereof to engage in the fireworks business as provided in RCW 70.77.255.

(2) The applicant shall own or have the right to possess a temporary fireworks stand or premises found by the fire department to comply with the standards set forth in this chapter for temporary fireworks stands.

(3) The applicant shall have and maintain a policy or policies of public liability and property damage insurance from a licensed insurance company or companies, which policy(ies) shall be subject to approval as to form by the city attorney. The policy(ies) shall have an aggregate total coverage amount of $1,000,000.

(4) The applicant’s location of place of business for sale of such fireworks shall be only in those areas or zones within the city where commercial or industrial activities are authorized under the zoning laws of the city; provided, that the sale of common fireworks from roadside stands shall not be deemed an enlargement of an existing nonconforming use.

(5) Applications for permits shall be made to the city clerk, who shall transmit them to the fire department, which shall investigate and report thereon to the city council. If the city council approves the application, the city clerk shall issue the permit.

(6) Applicants for renewal of permits shall be given preference over applicants for permits by applicants not previously licensed; provided, that if the holder of a permit fails to make an application for renewal by the second Tuesday in May, the preference shall be forfeited. The issuance of nonpreference roadside stand permits to applicants deemed equally qualified under this chapter shall be determined by lottery; provided, that the application is made by the second Tuesday of June.

(7) Orders denying or revoking permits shall be governed by the appeal process in Chapter 15.12 WMC. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.130 Reserved.

9.22.140 Emergency fireworks ban sale and use.

The fire chief may prohibit the discharge and sale of all fireworks during periods of extreme fire danger. For the purposes of this chapter, the term “extreme fire danger” shall mean a period of hot, dry weather, accompanied by low fuel moistures. It is during this period that wildland fires can be expected, and fire growth would be accelerated.

In the event of any such prohibition, all damages claimable against the city by any holder of a license or permit to use or sell such fireworks shall be limited to the cost of any such license or permit granted by the city. All claims against the city as a result of a temporary emergency order issued under this section shall be submitted to the city finance director within six months of the date the order issued. (Ord. 1919 § 1 (Exh. A), 2020; Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)

9.22.150 Enforcement

(1) Unless otherwise provided below, any person violating or failing to comply with the provisions of this chapter which does not also constitute a violation of state law shall be guilty of a civil infraction, and upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine of $250.00 for the first offense, $500.00 for the second offense, $750.00 for the third offense and $1,000 for each subsequent offense within a three-year period, or as otherwise provided in Chapter 15.12 WMC.

(2) The fire chief of the Camas-Washougal fire department, or designee, is responsible for the interpretation and enforcement of this chapter. The fire chief and fire personnel, Washougal police department and the city code enforcement officer shall have authority to issue citations to enforce this chapter and the fire chief may designate members of other city departments to enforce this chapter.

(3) Seizure and Forfeiture of Fireworks. In addition to monetary penalties and criminal prosecution, enforcement personnel from the Camas-Washougal fire department or Washougal police department may seize and dispose of fireworks that are in violation of this chapter.

(a) Before disposal, the city shall give written notice to the person from whom the consumer fireworks were seized, if known, of the city’s intent to dispose of the seized items. Notice shall be personally served or by mailing a copy of the notice by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the person’s last known address, if such address is known, and if such address is not known, mailing to the owner of the property on which the fireworks were found as shown in the county records and by posting the notice on the front door of that property. If enforcement personnel know that the owner of the consumer fireworks is a different person than the individual from whom the items were seized, the city shall also give notice of the intended disposal to the owner.

(b) If the enforcement personnel are unable to identify an owner of the fireworks after reasonable inquiry, the fireworks shall be deemed abandoned and the enforcement personnel may seize and dispose of the fireworks without further notice.

(c) The city’s written notice shall include instructions on how an individual may appeal the city’s intended disposal. Chapter 15.12 WMC shall provide the notice and appeal procedures for contested hearings.

(d) Only the person from whom the fireworks were seized or the owner of the fireworks may appeal the city’s seizure and intended disposal. If no appeal is requested, or if the appealing party does not prevail at the appeal hearing, the city shall dispose of the seized fireworks. (Ord. 1833 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017)