Fireworks Rules Vary By City, County

FORT SMITH (KFSM) -- July 4th is tomorrow, and many will be heading outside to shoot off fireworks.

But fireworks aren't legal to use in every area of Northwest Arkansas and the River Valley.

Law enforcement and fire officials say they want people to have a good time celebrating the holiday, but they also want them to be aware of local ordinances regarding fireworks.

In Fort Smith, for example, fireworks may not be sold or discharged within city limits. That includes the use of sparklers.

In Fayetteville, fireworks are legal, but they may only be discharged on private property from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. today (July 3) and 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. tomorrow (July 4).

The reasons behind the regulations are to protect lives as well as property.

"We get to see a lot of injuries," said Carey St. Cyr of the Fort Smith Fire Department. "We see a lot of facial injuries because of that, because they're standing over a firework and they discharge."

St. Cyr said they also see, "a lot of burned hands because of holding onto [fireworks]."

Those caught setting off fireworks within Fort Smith city limits could face hundreds of dollars in fines.

Fort Smith officials say it's a good idea to find a safe place in the county where fireworks are allowed. They also recommend having a bucket of water or a garden hose nearby.