I hate to be the bearer of bad news on the eve-eve of America’s birthday… but the possession and use of all fireworks by private citizens is illegal in Massachusetts. Yes, that includes the somewhat underwhelming, but still pyro-rific, sparklers and roman candles. As we all know, its common for many families to celebrate the Fourth of July by passing these small scale fireworks around the party for friends and family to light off, but have you taken a moment to consider what could happen if something goes wrong?
During the time around the 4th of July, an average of 200 people per day go to the hospital with fireworks-related injuries. Houses and other structures can also become casualties of the fun. The National Fire Protection Association states that more fires are reported during the Independence Day holiday than any other time. According to Mass.gov, in the past decade there have been 802 major fire and explosion incidents involving illegal fireworks reported to the Massachusetts Fire Incident Reporting System (MFIRS). The incidents caused 14 civilian injuries, two fire service injuries, and an estimated dollar loss of $2 million, which is high considering most fireworks fires are outdoor brush fires.
Even with all these stats, you may still be curious, if someone at your house is using fireworks and something goes awry, are you covered? If your house has structural damage, your homeowners insurance may cover it. If a neighbor’s property is damaged, their insurance will likely take care of the repairs, but may later sue your insurance for the loss. This could raise your premiums, make you liable for payments [if your insurance doesn’t cover it], or even lead to loss of your own coverage.
Keep in mind that by giving you this information we’re not condoning the illegal use of fireworks… By providing this info we’re making sure that as a homeowner you are conscious of the risks involved with at-home fireworks and letting you may be able to put file a claim should any damages or injuries arise from fireworks.
After all this information, doesn’t it just seem like it would be easier (and safer!) to view one of the amazing professional fireworks displays that are going on in our area!? Check out a listing of regional fireworks here.