Breaking down GA. and S.C. fireworks laws - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Breaking down GA. and S.C. fireworks laws

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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

In a tin stand on the South Carolina side of the Back River Bridge, the Levy Fire Department sells fireworks that are illegal in Georgia.

Levy Fire Chief, Doug Graham, says Georgia is where most of their customers live, that they travel from as far away as Atlanta and Macon.

Asked about the legality of shooting of those firecrackers in Georgia, Graham said, "I haven't heard of anyone getting arrested for it over there."

Fire officials in Chatham County say when residents shoot off illegal fireworks, police do not typically charge them with violating the state law. They just tell them to stop or take them away.

"Georgia has a very narrow field of what is allowed which makes it difficult for us, because we are a border area," Pooler Fire Chief, Wade Simmons said.

In Georgia, anything that makes a loud bang or shoots far into the air and rains down sparks is illegal. So are any fireworks with projectiles like toy helicopters or soldiers with paper parachutes. Bottle rockets and Roman candles also are banned.

But Simmons says his fire department still runs a dozen or so fire calls on July 4 for fireworks.

A few things are allowed in Georgia are sparklers, snap pops and colorful firework fountains that don't shoot into the air.

Levy's fire chief defends his state's practice of selling nearly every firecracker legal in the United States.

"All of it makes sparks, and sparks makes fire," he said.

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