The State Bar of Wisconsin has published a helpful guide on fireworks laws. Having once told a county sheriff’s deputy, “Yes sir, we’re all done lighting them now,” I suggest you read it!
The full article can be found here:
Highlights from the article:
“I think we all realize that there is a significant amount of use of fireworks without a permit,” said Kelly McKnight, district attorney for Ashland County in northern Wisconsin.
“Perhaps law enforcement simply has bigger fish to fry on July 4 than illegal firecrackers and bottle rockets,” McKnight said. “I’m not trying to minimize the illegality of fireworks without a permit. I just know from experience that July 4 and the surrounding days can be a pretty busy time for law enforcement, and I doubt illegal fireworks top the list.”
Under section 167.10, certain July 4 novelties are not considered “fireworks” and anyone can use or possess them. No permit is required.
In general, a device is illegal, without a permit, if it explodes or is propelled into the air.
Fireworks can only be sold to individuals who have valid permits. However, in-state firework vendors can also sell fireworks to nonresidents who don’t have a permit to buy, so long as the fireworks are packaged and shipped outside the state.
Illegal sales are subject to a $1,000 fine.
However, if an Indian tribe has its own firework ordinance, state firework regulations cannot be enforced on tribal lands unless exceptional circumstances exist.
Have a happy Fourth everyone, and be safe!
Johanna R Kirk