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SPECIAL COVERAGE: Living With Wildfires: San Diego Firestorm 10 Years Later

State Fire Marshall Warns Residents About Dangers Of Illegal Fireworks

— Play with illegal fireworks this Fourth of July and you could be seriously injured or end up in jail, or both. The State Fire Marshal is warning of those consequences in advance of this weekend, when fireworks go on sale around the state.

Legal fireworks sold in California are marked with the state fire marshal’s seal and are sold only at approved stands. Buying illegal fireworks and explosives, like roman candles or M-80’s, meanwhile, could bring a felony charge. And children who posses or cause damage with illegal fireworks can be tried in juvenile court, and their parents could be responsible for any and all damages.

Acting State Fire Marshal Tanya Hoover says illegal fireworks can cause devastating injuries such as loss of eye sight, face injuries, and hearing loss. "There’s all sorts of things that can happen when you’re using an explosive or a flammable material," she says.

California has regulated firework sales since the 1940s. Many Californians have complained for years about those restrictions, which are absent in most other states across the Sunbelt. Hoover says they are needed to prevent fires, injuries, and death.

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