As we get closer to celebrating the 4th of July, the Wichita Falls Police Department would like to remind everyone of the City Ordinances prohibiting the use or possession of fireworks.
The possession of all fireworks is illegal in the city limits of Wichita Falls. If you are found to be in possession of or discharging fireworks you can be subject to a fine. It is important that the public recognize the potential dangers in the use and handling of fireworks.
Please celebrate Independence Day safely and responsibly!
The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this article, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning:
Pyrotechnics means and includes any combustible or explosive composition or any substance or combination of substances or article prepared for the purpose of producing a visible or an audible effect by combustion, explosion, deflagration or detonation, and includes Roman candles; sky rockets; helicopter-type rockets; cylindrical fountains, cone fountains; wheels; illuminating torches and colored fire in any form; sparklers and dip sticks; mines; shells; firecrackers; salutes; whistles without report; squibs; a fire balloon; a hydrogen-filled balloon; signal lights; blank cartridges; toy pistols, toy cannons, toy canes or toy guns in which explosives are used; torpedoes; dago bombs or other devices of like construction and any devices containing any explosive or flammable compound or any tablets or other devices containing any explosive substance. However, the term “pyrotechnics” does not include auto flares, paper caps containing not in excess of an average of 0.25 of a grain of explosive content per paper cap manufactured in accordance with the regulations for packing and shipping as provided therein and toy pistols, toy canes, toy guns or other devices for use of such caps, the sale and use of which shall be permitted.
(Code 1966, § 15-1(a); Code 2001, § 50-91)
This article shall not apply to the possession or use of signaling devices for current daily consumption by railroads, the Police Department and Fire Department and others required to use them by law, nor to the possession, sale or use of normal stock of flashlight compositions by photographers or dealers in photographic supplies or for signal or ceremonial purposes or athletic or sports events or for the use by military organizations.
This article shall be applicable within the corporate city limits and also within the area immediately adjacent and contiguous to the city limits and extending outside the city limits for a distance of 5,000 feet. Notwithstanding the prohibitions contained in this article, pyrotechnics warehouses and commercial wholesale pyrotechnics stores containing in size at least 1,500 square feet existing on the effective date of the ordinance from which this section is derived shall be authorized to continue operation for a period of ten years from date of annexation into the city. Upon the expiration of such ten-year period, such structures shall be utilized for a purpose consistent with the requirements of this article. Commercial wholesale pyrotechnics stores, as that term is used in this subsection, shall mean pyrotechnics stores that sell pyrotechnic devices to bona fide retail dealers and not to the general public.
(Code 1966, § 15-1(d), (j); Code 2001, § 50-92)
No person shall fire or explode or keep, store, manufacture or sell any pyrotechnics in the corporate city limits.
(Code 1966, § 15-1(b); Code 2001, § 50-95)
No person shall have in his possession in the corporate city limits any pyrotechnics. Subject to Texas Local Government Code § 342.013, any pyrotechnics so found in the possession of any person shall be condemned, seized, and confiscated by the Police Department or the fire marshal.
Any commercial pyrotechnics dealer or operator, jobber, retailer, importer, or manufacturer transporting Class C fireworks within the city limits and extending for a distance outside of the city limits for a total of 5,000 feet must display on each vehicle the word “fireworks.” This may be permanently attached to the vehicle or on a sign. The word “fireworks” must be at least six inches in height and shall be visible on both sides and the rear of the vehicle.
Prosecution for possession of fireworks pursuant to this article shall be subject to the affirmative defense established by Texas Local Government Code § 342.013.
(Code 1966, § 15-1(c); Code 2001, § 50-96)
State Law reference— Extraterritorial jurisdiction regarding nuisances, Texas Local Government Code § 217.001.
The state fire marshal may issue a written permit to a properly qualified person for giving a pyrotechnic display in accordance with Texas Government Code § 417.0041. It shall be the duty of the city fire marshal to make an investigation as to whether such a display as proposed shall be of such a character and so located that it may be hazardous to property or dangerous to any person, and he shall so advise the state fire marshal of his findings. All pyrotechnic displays must be permitted by the city Fire Marshal’s Office. A fee established by separate ordinance will be assessed for the permit. All displays will be supervised by the fire marshal.
(Code 1966, § 15-1(e); Code 2001, § 50-97)
No person shall have, keep, store, manufacture or sell any pyrotechnics within the area immediately adjacent and contiguous to the city limits and extending for a distance outside of the city limits for a total of 50 feet. It shall be unlawful to do or perform any act in violation of this subsection within such area of 50 feet outside the city limits, provided that this subsection shall not apply within any portion of such 50-foot area which is contained within the territory of any other municipal corporation.
No person shall use, fire, explode or cause to be used, fired or exploded any pyrotechnics within the area immediately adjacent and contiguous to the city limits and extending for a distance outside the city limits for a total of 50 feet. It shall be unlawful to do or perform any act in violation of this subsection within such area of 50 feet outside the city limits, provided that this subsection shall not apply within any portion of such 50-foot area which is contained within the territory of any other municipal corporation.
(Code 1966, § 15-1(f), (g); Code 2001, § 50-98)
No person shall have, keep, store, manufacture or sell any pyrotechnics within an area extending for a distance outside of the city limits from a distance of 50 feet to a distance of 5,000 feet from the city limits, unless such person shall have obtained a permit from the city fire marshal’s office. The application for such permit shall contain the specific location of the building used to keep, store, manufacture or sell the pyrotechnics and must also contain a blueprint or diagram showing the construction of such building. The construction of the building must comply with the rules and regulations of the city fire marshal’s office. A permit fee established by separate ordinance will be assessed per retail location.
(Code 1966, § 15-1(h); Code 2001, § 50-99)
All persons manufacturing or selling pyrotechnics within an area extending for a distance outside of the city limits from a distance of 50 feet to a distance of 5,000 feet from the city limits shall close their doors and places of business each night from 11:55 p.m. until 6:00 a.m. the following morning and shall not sell or manufacture any pyrotechnics during this time period.
(Code 1966, § 15-1(i); Code 2001, § 50-100)