In Washington State, any person who desires to engage in the manufacture, importation, sale, or use of fireworks in a public display must be licensed by the Washington State Fire Marshal’s Office.
There are four types of fireworks licenses that are issued by the State Fire Marshal’s Office:
General Firework Information
When to Call 911
Annual Fireworks Reports
For the Fire Service and Emergency Rooms
Fireworks Safety, Training,
How to Dispose of Fireworks
• Who to Call to Dispose of Unused or Unsafe Fireworks (Coming Soon)
Training is provided to local authorities having jurisdiction on inspecting fireworks stand and public displays.
The State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) regulates fireworks licensees for statutory compliance. Complaints about fireworks use should be directed to your local law enforcement agency. See the link to When to Call 911 Regarding Fireworks for more information.
The State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) regulates fireworks manufacturers, wholesalers, importers, general display and pyrotechnic operator licensees for statutory compliance. This includes any business entity or person licensed or not who engages in fireworks regulated activities by RCW 70.77 and WAC 212-17.
The relevant statutes and rules authorize SFMO to deny fireworks licenses, take administrative action, and impose civil penalties against violators of the fireworks laws and rules.
The SFMO initiates action when there has been a complaint from the public, an “Authority Having Jurisdiction” (AHJ), federal and state agencies, the public, or when the SFMO has concerns about the licensee. Depending on the facts, the SFMO notifies the company or individual about the investigation and scope of the complaint in writing. If the violation involves unlicensed activities, the SFMO will also send a Cease and Desist Order.
Once the investigation is complete, the SFMO sends an Administrative Violation Notice (AVN) letter with a civil penalty notice. The letter explains the charges in detail and the results of the investigation. Once the business or individual receives the letter and penalty notice, the recipient must either pay the fine or appeal the action.
Within the AVN will be instructions regarding the time frame in which a recipient has to appeal the action through both an informal conference (WAC 212-17-480) and formal hearing process (WAC 212-17-485).
The SFMO has the authority to seize fireworks which are illegally sold, offered for sale, used, discharged, possessed, or transported in violation of the fireworks laws and rules. When fireworks are seized the SFMO will serve notice to the owner and person in charge of the fireworks. The notice will advise the time frame in which the party has to contact the SFMO to contest the fireworks seizure. If contesting the seizure, an administrative law judge will preside over the hearing.
If no one contacts the SFMO the fireworks will be deemed forfeited and either destroyed or sold at auction.
Complaints about fireworks use should be directed to your local law enforcement agency.