Advertising for New Hampshire Fireworks Sales Aggravates Massachusetts Fire Officials

We're nearing the peak fireworks season, and that means sparklers, firecrackers and mortars are flying off store shelves at places like TNT, Alamo and Phantom Fireworks in Londonderry, New Hampshire.

"We just pride ourselves on safety," Phantom Fireworks Asst. Manager Krysta Nelson said.

That means ID checks at the door to make sure you're 21 – or 18 with a military ID – and signatures kept on file that you will use them responsibly.

"We don't want anyone using them incorrectly, we don't want you taking them to places that it is not legal to set them off," Nelson said.

But billboards in Massachusetts have fire officials there frustrated.

"It is illegal for people in Massachusetts to use, possess, buy fireworks," Lowell Fire Chief Jeff Winward said. "But it is legal, unfortunately, to advertise in Massachusetts."

Chief Winward says he thinks many people just ignore the fine print warning customers to "check local laws to see if fireworks may be used in your community."

"I think it's pretty clear it's illegal," said Chief Winward. "I think people are just kind of ignoring these warnings and these laws sometimes, and it can be hazardous. People can lose fingers, hands, they can get seriously injured, start structure fires."

Phantom Fireworks says making sure customers can safely handle what they're purchasing and that they're aware of what's permitted where is essential.

"We have the list right up front. You can check your town, whether or not you're permissible and if they are permissible, you have to go to your fire department and get a legal permit," Nelson said.

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