If it goes up or blows up in the city of Auburn, it’s illegal.
That basic rule has not changed since City leaders wrote it into law nearly 10 years ago.
Still, a wee reminder from Auburn Police about fireworks in the city cannot hurt.
Discharge of legal fireworks is allowed between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m., July 4 only. Discharge is also allowed from 6 p.m., to 1 a.m. on Dec. 31, on Jan. 1.
This year the APD has increased enforcement on possession and-or discharge of illegal fireworks – fireworks that are not safe and sane – and on children using fireworks without adult supervision. To buy legal fireworks, a person must be at least 16 years old.
On June 26, police began a 5 p.m. through 11 p.m., city-wide emphasis, which remains in effect through July 4.
In addition to the usual staffing levels for 911 calls, from 2 p.m. July 4 to 2 a.m. July 5, the APD will field up to 16 officers in eight vehicles throughout Auburn, each directed to respond to fireworks-related calls for service and seek out the discharging of illegal fireworks in neighborhoods. Two 2-person patrol cars will keep an eye on city parks.
“We’ll have six officers and a sergeant assigned just to the area of the Muckleshoot fireworks stands during the day,” said Auburn Police Cmdr. Mark Callier, adding that in addition, four traffic officers and a sergeant will work SR164 to ensure a decent traffic flow. The stands should close at 2 a.m.
The APD has assigned seven officers, a sergeant and four bike officers to watch over the July 4 celebration at Les Gove Park.
The Auburn Police Department will cite those unlawfully using fireworks, with a possible fine of up to $1,000 and 90 days in jail. Those recklessly discharging fireworks risk up to a $5,000 fine and a year in jail. Anyone caught in possession of a device containing more than 2 grains of pyrotechnic charge — such as an M80 — may be charged with a felony, punishable up to 20 years in prison.
Not only will officers issue criminal citations to scofflaws,, they’ll take their illegal fireworks, too.
Residents can help the City with this stepped-up emphasis by calling the police non-emergency number at 253-288-2121 when fireworks are illegally discharged in their neighborhoods.