During the New Year’s holiday weekend, Eugene Police Patrol and Metro Explosives disposal unit will be available to respond to fireworks calls for service, especially where illegal fireworks are observed. Even if there are not ultimately sufficient units to respond to calls, reporting illegal fireworks will help the City better track their use and inform response plans for future years.
TEMPORARY SOUTH HILLS FIREWORKS BAN
Due to the severe drought conditions, Eugene City Council voted unanimously to temporarily ban all fireworks in the south hills, south from 18th Avenue and east of Agate Street through 2021 and 2022. This ban, which became effective in June, was a necessary step for public health and safety. The ban includes legal fireworks like fountains, flitter sparklers, ground spinners and wheels. The temporary ban penalty is a fine not to exceed $500. The presumptive fine is $250. Maps are attached.
CITY ORDINANCE (APPLYING TO ALL EUGENE CITY LOCATIONS)
Fireworks went on sale June 23 and sold through July 6. Consumer fireworks discharges within the Eugene city limits are restricted to July 3 and 4, and December 31 and January 1. Commercial public displays with the Eugene city limits are restricted to July 3-5.
OREGON LAW APPLYING TO FIREWORKS
Oregon law prohibits illegal fireworks, which include any firework that flies into the air, explodes, or travels more than 12 feet horizontally on the ground, throughout the entire city, without a permit. Fireworks commonly called bottle rockets, Roman Candles, and firecrackers are illegal in Oregon.
Eugene Springfield Fire has a Fireworks App (Fireworks Alert) - https://www.eugene-or.gov/120/Fire-and-Emergency-Medical-Services Look for the article “Download New App to Report Illegal Fireworks Use”. City officials receive the information along with the geo location from where the picture was taken. Reports will not result in immediate action. Information will be gathered and analyzed to identify areas of the community to target future education and enforcement efforts.
Fireworks are a traditional way to celebrate some holidays, but they can be noisy and an extreme fire hazard. Please be mindful of people in your neighborhood who may be sensitive to loud noises, due to PTSD or other conditions. Especially combat veterans, who deserve our every comfort after their service, can be impacted by the sounds and sights of illegal fireworks. Also many pets are lost each year due to reactions to fireworks.
To report illegal fireworks within the Eugene city limits, call 541.682.5111. To report within the Springfield city limits call 541.726.3714. The Eugene base fine for illegal fireworks is $250. The social host ordinance in Eugene also applies to fireworks. The social host, or ordinance on unruly gatherings, holds individuals criminally responsible for hosting, organizing and allowing an unruly event or social gathering. Eugene property owners where the event is hosted will also be penalized if there are multiple violations of this ordinance at the same property. The Eugene Municipal Court has assigned a base fine of $375 for criminal violations of this ordinance. Both hosts and property owners could be civilly liable for police, fire and public works response to repeated illegal gatherings that fall under this ordinance. For more information: SOCIAL HOST
BACKGROUND FIREWORKS INFO
People often ask questions about sparklers. The Oregon State Fire Marshal’s website information states that wood core sparklers are considered legal retail fireworks and as such, would be subject to the new code. The 10-inch wire core sparklers are considered an unclassified item and not a firework and can be sold and used throughout the year.
More info at Oregon State Fire Marshal’s website at http://www.oregon.gov/osp/sfm
What are Legal Fireworks?
Legal fireworks in Oregon can be sold from June 23 through July 6 of each year. These include fountains, spinners and wheels available at retail fireworks outlets. Additionally, legal fireworks produce only smoke, sparks or fire but DO NOT explode, eject balls of fire, fly into the air more than 12 inches or travel more than six feet on the ground. When both legal and illegal fireworks are improperly handled, injuries and fire damage occur.
Illegal fireworks include but are not limited to, fire crackers, bottle rockets and roman candles, fly into the air, explode and behave in an uncontrolled and unpredictable manner. Illegal fireworks are extremely dangerous and create extreme fire danger. Possession of illegal fireworks is a class B misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of $2,500 and six months in jail.
Cherry bombs, M-80’s and larger and any legal or illegal firework that has been modified are considered an EXPLOSIVE DEVICE and should not be handled. Call the Eugene Police Department immediately and do not transport.
Reporting Illegal Fireworks
Report illegal fireworks use in progress in Eugene: 541-682-5111
Report Illegal fireworks use in progress in Springfield: 541.726.3714
Safety info at: www.oregon.gov/osp/sfm