Are Fireworks Legal Here?

Tuesday, June 26th, 2018

The answer depends on where you are located!  Within the City of Pflugerville boundaries, all fireworks (including sparklers) are ILLEGAL year round to possess or use.  Local police enforce this law; you can report concerns any time of day to their non-emergency number at (512) 990-6700.

In unincorporated Travis County, fireworks are generally are legal but THERE ARE SEVERAL LIMITATIONS, some of which are listed below. Call the the Sheriff’s dispatch number (512) 974-0845 then press OPTION 3 for fireworks issues in unincorporated Travis County.

  • Fireworks cannot be used on public roadways.
  • Fireworks cannot be used on school district property.
  • Fireworks cannot be used within 600 feet of any church, a licensed child-care center, a hospital, or a public or private school or higher-education facility unless the person received written permission from that organization.
  • Fireworks are illegal in Travis County parks.
  • Fireworks are illegal to use on Wells Branch Municipal Utility District (MUD) property, which includes all MUD facilities, parks, trails, greenbelts, the Pond, drainage detention areas, the veloway, and the grassy area located at Robert I. Walker and Charla Circle.
  • For all other properties, you must get written permission from the property owner to light any personal fireworks – even if it’s a commercial property not in use at nighttime.

Even where fireworks are legal, they are risky to use and cause many fires and injuries around the U.S.!  The safest legal way to enjoy fireworks is to attend a professional fireworks show, such as the Pfirecracker Pfestival in Pflugerville or the 4th Fest in Wells Branch. Here are a few other fireworks safety tips:

Make Fireworks a Family Activity

  • Before the holiday, make a point to discuss fireworks safety with everyone in your family to decrease the chance of someone getting hurt.
  • Never let children purchase fireworks without parents there — even older kids.
  • Insist on adult supervision whenever fireworks are being lit – even for older kids. Children age 10 to 14 years old actually get the second-most number of fireworks burns and injuries, right behind preschoolers and toddlers!
  • Kids who are younger than kindergarten-age should never be allowed to hold any fireworks on their own, including sparklers. Sparklers reach temperatures of 1,200 degrees, which is hot enough to melt metal. Give little kids glow-sticks instead. Pass the sparklers to much older kids and adults to carefully light ONE at a time – ideally wearing gloves.

Preparing to Light Fireworks

  • Only light fireworks OUTSIDE on a flat surface that’s far from any homes or buildings. Don’t light fireworks near dry grass or leaves – you can catch them on fire.
  • Before you light a firework, take a good look around to be sure there aren’t any people or pets in range of possibly getting hurt.
  • Don’t lean over firework devices or place your hand over them when lighting. Immediately back up as far as you can after lighting! The body parts that suffer the most fireworks injuries are fingers, hands, eyes, face, and ears.

Safely Disposing of Fireworks

  • Don’t try to re-light fireworks that didn’t work on the first try! Leave them alone, then thoroughly soak them in water with a bucket or hose before you try to handle them.
  • Double-wrap ALL fireworks in plastic before throwing them in the trash. The same is true for a firework you find sitting on the ground that looks like it’s been used. It may still be active and could re-ignite in your hand or pocket.
  • Fireworks are poisonous to pets. Symptoms may include vomiting, a painful abdomen, and bloody diarrhea. Be sure not to leave behind any used fireworks where pets (yours or someone else’s) spend time.