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Fireworks Safety

Got illegal fireworks?

In efforts to reduce safety hazards and keep illegal fireworks off our community streets, the Happy Valley Police is once again hosting a NO QUESTIONS ASKED fireworks turn in program. No shame, no judgment, no problem!
Dates: Thursday, July 1 & Friday, July 2

Time: 8am-5pm
Location: Happy Valley Community Policing Center
129 SE King Road
Happy Valley, OR 97086

*Look for the receptacle in front of the building and simply drop off your items.

Together, let’s help keep Happy Valley safe this 4th of July!

In the days leading up to the Fourth of July holiday, as well as several days after, a task force of police and community service officers watch the streets and skies of Happy Valley, on the lookout for illegal fireworks. While fireworks are the Fourth of July’s hallmark feature, serious catastrophes inevitably ensue when safety precautions and the law are ignored. Complaints due to illegal fireworks in the area are naturally higher this time of year, so the task force operates in efforts to be proactive to prevent major crises. To do this, the team conducts targeted patrols of neighborhoods and responds to resident reports. While the City spends the majority of its fireworks safety efforts in conjunction with Independence Day, the information contained on this page is relevant to fireworks use throughout the year.

Be mindful of those who may be struggling. The sound of fireworks can be extremely triggering for combat veterans and other community members who have experienced trauma. With one loud bang, someone’s fear, anxiety, and turmoil may be brought to the surface and relived. Those impacted are likely taking personal steps to manage their symptoms as best they can, but keeping fireworks use within reason goes a long way in helping support those most vulnerable.

Keep your roof over your head. Fireworks are inherently dangerous and with one false move, your home could literally go up in flames. Even worse, a mistake on your part could cause a neighbor’s home to burn to the ground. Ultimately, if your fireworks start a real fire, you aren’t the only one who may pay the price.

Safety tips
Clackamas Fire District #1 encourages these fireworks safety tips:

  • Store fireworks, matches, and lighters out of children’s ready and only adults should light fireworks.
  • Always read and follow label directions.
  • Only light one firework at a time and quickly move away.
  • Remember, do not throw fireworks, or hold them.
  • Always have water handy (a garden hose or bucket of water) and soak used fireworks thoroughly
  • Never re-light “dud” fireworks.

For more information, check out Clackamas Fire District #1: https://clackamasfire.com/fire-prevention/education/fireworks/

Is it worth it? Consider the cost of a $1,000 citation. If you are found to be in possession of illegal fireworks, your items will be confiscated, and you will be given an automatic citation to the tune of one grand. Officers aren’t going to be interested in hearing any of your excuses. If someone in your neighborhood is setting off illegal fireworks, PLEASE call to report it. You could help prevent serious injury and property damage and help keep neighborhoods safe.

Don’t be the neighbor everybody loathes. Independence Day is of course a time for celebration, but incessant fireworks in the days leading up to and following the holiday is a nuisance and disruptive to those trying to go about their daily lives. Please be courteous to others and keep the noise to a minimum.

How do I know if the fireworks I’m using are legal?

Any fireworks you light must be purchased from Oregon permitted retailers and stands. This means if you have purchased your fireworks from another state or from a vendor that has not been approved by the Oregon State Fire Marshal’s office, those fireworks are, in fact, illegal. Fireworks that fly in the air, explode, or behave in an uncontrolled and unpredictable manner are not allowed for use in Oregon. Period. Oregon vendors that have been approved to sell fireworks won’t even have these in their inventory.
For more information, check out the Office of the State Fire Marshal: https://www.oregon.gov/osp/programs/sfm/Pages/Fireworks.aspx

Stay in control. Wildfires brought on by dry climate conditions are of significant concern in the Pacific Northwest. This is especially the case given recent events. Thousands of acres can easily be destroyed because of a lone flame or smoldering shell. Help keep our green spaces, wetlands, and forest areas safe by keeping fireworks far away from vegetation and out of harm’s way.

Safety, first. Would you allow a child or even yourself to handle something that was hot enough to melt glass or aluminum? Even sparklers, which are commonly used around the 4th of July can burn at temperatures up to 1,800 degrees! It’s no wonder the busiest day of the year for emergency rooms is usually Independence Day, with most common injuries resulting from extreme burns, loss of fingers or limbs, and severe eye damage. Pay attention to what you’re doing and keep safety your top priority.

Safety Videos

Contacts

Happy Valley Police (non-emergency) – (503) 655-8211

Happy Valley City Hall – (503) 783-3800

Clackamas County Police (non-emergency) – (503) 655-8211

Clackamas Fire District #1– (503) 742-2600

In an emergency, dial 911

Protect all creatures great and small. Pets do not understand why their world suddenly gets so loud this time of year and not being able to anticipate where and when the next boom will originate is extremely stressful. Make sure you have a plan in place to help your pet remain comfortable and contained during holiday festivities. Even worse than hearing every snap, crackle, and pop is being lost outside without you for comfort.

Don’t risk it. Per Oregon law, fireworks used in the state MUST be purchased from an Oregon permitted retail sales location. Fireworks that fly in the air, explode, or behave in an uncontrolled and unpredictable manner are not allowed to be used without a proper permit issued by the Office of the State Fire Marshal.

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