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Fireworks Information

Generally speaking, the State Fire Marshal enforces laws governing the use, possession, shipment and sale of fireworks in Indiana. See Indiana Code 22-11-14. These laws require:

  1. manufacturers, wholesalers, importers, and distributors to obtain a certificate of compliance in order to sell fireworks at wholesale, offer to sell fireworks at wholesale, or ship fireworks or cause fireworks to be shipped into Indiana;
  2. retailers to obtain a certificate of compliance in order to sell consumer and section 8(a) fireworks from tents and other structures;
  3. retailers selling section 8(a) items from temporary stands to obtain a fireworks stand retails sales permit;
  4. a permit to conduct a supervised public display of fireworks (which allows possession, transportation, and delivery of special fireworks); and
  5. use of fireworks to be limited to adults (or under the supervision of an adult) at specific dates, times, and locations.

For more information about these programs and to apply for a permit or certificate of compliance, please review the information below. Questions can be directed to 317-232-1407 or codequestions@dhs.in.gov.

  • Manufacturers, Wholesalers, Importers and Distributors

    A certificate of compliance must be obtained from the Indiana State Fire Marshal to operate as a manufacturer, wholesaler, importer or distributor within Indiana. See Indiana Code 22-11-14-5(d). Applications must be submitted, annually, before June 15 and expire on December 31. The fee for a certificate of compliance is $1,000 per permit.

    In addition to applying for a certificate of compliance, manufacturers, wholesalers, importers or distributors must submit a list containing the name and address of each retail location of each of their customers to the Indiana State Fire Marshal on or before June 1st of each year. Interstate wholesalers also must keep a record of each sale of special fireworks.

    Upon receipt of the application and fee, the Division of Fire and Building Safety staff will perform an inspection to determine compliance with Indiana Code Chapter 22-11-14. If compliance is established, a certificate of compliance will be issued. A certified copy of this certificate must be posted at each location where fireworks are offered for sale to the public. However, if compliance is not found, then no certificate will be issued. If a certificate has been issued and violations are later found, the certificate will be revoked.

    Please be aware, it is unlawful for a manufacturer, wholesaler, importer or distributor to sell fireworks at wholesale, offer to sell fireworks at wholesaler, or ship fireworks or cause fireworks to be shipped into Indiana unless they hold a valid certificate of compliance. Noncompliance will result in removal of all stocks of fireworks at the expense of the owner.

    Apply for a Certificate of Compliance

  • Retail Sale of Consumer Fireworks

    To sell consumer fireworks at a retail location, a certificate of compliance must be obtained from the Indiana State Fire Marshal. See Indiana Code 22-11-14-11(c). Applications for a certificate of compliance must be filed on an annual basis. See Indiana Code 22-11-14-11(a)(1). The fee for a certificate of compliance is $1,000 for the first location, and $500 for each additional sales location in a tent and $200 for each additional sales location in a structure. In addition to obtaining a certificate of compliance, retailers are also required to collect the public safety fee provided for in Indiana Code 22-11-14-12.

    Tents

    In order to sell consumer fireworks and items referenced in Indiana Code 22-11-14-8(a) from a tent, the following conditions must be met:

    1. The tent may not be larger than 1,500 square feet.
    2. A certificate of compliance must be obtained for each tent.
    3. The tent may not be located closer than 100 feet from a permanent structure.
    4. A vehicle may not be parked closer than 20 feet from the edge of the tent.
    5. The tent must be fire retardant.
    6. All zoning and land use rules must be complied with.
    7. Sale of fireworks may not be made for more than 45 days in a year.
    8. The weight of consumer fireworks may not exceed 3,000 pounds.
    9. The applicant must have operated as a retailer (which includes a resident wholesaler who supplied consumer fireworks to an applicant for a tent registration in 2005) from a tent with a registration in 2005. An affidavit and proof of sales are required to be submitted with the application.
    10. The operation from the tent must be continuous (every year) from 2005 on.

    Note: An affidavit and proof of sales is required to be submitted with the initial application.

    Structures

    In order to sell consumer fireworks and items referenced in Indiana Code 22-11-14-8(a) from a structure, the conditions of one of the following categories must be met:

    Subsection (b)(1) Structures - Pre-July 4, 2003, Fireworks Stores or Stores that Sold Fireworks Year-round
    1. The structure must have complied with the rules for a B-2 or M occupancy before July 4, 2003;
    2. Consumer fireworks must have been sold or stored in the structure on or before July 4, 2003; and
    3. No intervening non-fireworks sales or storage has occurred since July 4, 2003.

    Note: An affidavit and proof of sales is required to be submitted with the initial application. Any period of non-fireworks sale or storage after July 4, 2003, results in disqualification from this designation. Periods of no operation (vacancy) at a structure will not affect designation under this category.

    Subsection (b)(2) Structures - Pre-July 4, 2003, Structures Where the Primary Business Is Not the Sale of Consumer Fireworks
    1. The structure must have complied with the rules for a B-2 or M occupancy before July 4, 2003;
    2. Consumer fireworks must have been sold or stored in the structure on or before July 4, 2003;
    3. The structure must be at a location at which the retailer was registered as a resident wholesaler in 2005;
    4. The retailer’s primary business in the structure may not be the sale of consumer fireworks.

    Note: An affidavit and proof of sales is required to be submitted with the initial application.

    Subsection (b)(3) Structures
    • The structure must comply with the rules for an H-3 building occupancy as provided in the 2003 building code, or the equivalent classification in the subsequent edition of the building code that applies to the structure.
    Subsection (b)(4) Structures
    • The structure must comply with the rules adopted after July 3, 2003 for an M occupancy building.
    Subsection (c) Structures
    1. The structure does not qualify under subsection (b)(1), (b)(2), (b)(3), or (b)(4).
    2. The structure must be a Class 1 structure.
    3. The location must comply with all applicable local zoning and land use rules.
    4. The weight of consumer fireworks in the structure may not exceed 3,000 gross pounds.
    5. Consumer fireworks must have been sold from the structure in 2005.
    6. The structure must have been registered in 2005.
    7. The operation from the structure must be continuous (every year) from 2005 on.

    Note: An affidavit and proof of sales is required to be submitted with the initial application.

    Upon receipt of a completed application, the required fee, and any required affidavit mentioned above, the Indiana State Fire Marshal will issue a certificate of compliance for the location. However, please be aware that issuance of a certificate of compliance does not mean that violations do not exist on your property. Following issuance of a certificate of compliance, the IDHS Division of Fire and Building Safety or a local fire department (upon delegation by the State Fire Marshal) will perform an inspection of the structure covered by the certificate to ensure compliance with the applicable statutes and rules. Violations may result in fines, building closure, revocation of a certificate of compliance, and removal of stocks of fireworks possessed, transported or delivered in violation of Indiana Code 22-11-14.

    For a list of common violations, please review this document: common violations.

    Please be advised that in addition to the above requirements, all applicable building and fire safety laws adopted by the Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission must be complied with, including weight restrictions.

    Apply for a Certificate of Compliance

  • Retail Sale of Section 8(a) ("Safe and Sane") Items From Fireworks Stands

    To sell section 8(a) items at retail, from a temporary stand, a fireworks stand retail sales permit must be obtained from the Indiana State Fire Marshal. See Indiana Code § 22-11-14-7. These permits are for the sale of section 8(a) items only, and only apply when the sale is not from a tent or other structure. Applications for a permit must be submitted, annually, before June 1. The permits expire 1 year after the date of issuance and shall be posted at the stand so that it may be easily seen by the public. Please keep in mind that issuance of a permit does not constitute approval of the fireworks offered for sale, and it is the retailer’s responsibility to ensure all fireworks conform to the applicable law. Permit holders must also post the certificate of compliance from the wholesaler, including a descriptive list of the approved fireworks. Fireworks may not be sold from a motor vehicle.

    Stores are allowed to sell the following section 8(a) ("safe and sane") fireworks in unlimited quantities, and they are not included in the overall weight of fireworks in stores:

    • Dipped sticks or wire sparklers. However, total pyrotechnic composition may not exceed 100 grams per item. Devices containing chlorate or perchlorate salts may not exceed 5 grams in total composition per item.
    • Cylindrical fountains
    • Cone fountains
    • Illuminating torches
    • Wheels
    • Ground spinners
    • Flitter sparklers
    • Snakes or glow worms
    • Smoke devices
    • Trick noisemakers, including:
      • Party poppers
      • Booby traps
      • Snappers
      • Trick matches
      • Cigarette loads
      • Auto burglar alarms

    Apply for a Permit Online
    Note: Apply for all permits at the same time to avoid repeated fees. When completing an online application, please use browsers Chrome or Edge; other browsers may experience issues. Also, in accordance with the state's goal to modernize and offer better customer service to Hoosiers, you are encouraged to apply online and not by paper.

  • Supervised Public Display of Fireworks

    Ensuring Fireworks Operations Safety

    Ensuring Fireworks Operations Safety

    In order to conduct a supervised public display of fireworks and to possess, deliver, and transport special fireworks, a permit must be obtained from the Indiana State Fire Marshal. See Indiana Code 22-11-14-2 and 675 Indiana Administrative Code 12-9-5 (page 49). Applications for permits must be received at least 15 calendar days before the date of a display, and the applications should include the resume of the fireworks display operator's (or operators') experience in preparing displays, igniting or discharging fireworks, implementing emergency procedures and disposing of unfired or defective fireworks.

    Permits issued by the State Fire Marshal are not effective until the chief of the fire department of the municipality in which the display is to be held has approved the operator of the display as qualified and has inspected the site of the display to determine that the display will not be hazardous to property or persons.

    Based on state statute and NFPA 1123, the following applies for fireworks displays in Indiana:

    • If the fireworks show is for a private gathering where 1.3g fireworks are intended to be used, IDHS considers this a public display and a permit must be obtained.
      • If a permit is not obtained for a private gathering, then only consumer 1.4g fireworks can be used.
    • If a fireworks show is a traditional public display for public purposes (at baseball games or theme parks, for a city and so on), then a public display permit is required.

    Any individual who wants to possess 1.3g (special) fireworks must have a supervised public display permit. Individuals are not permitted to buy and use 1.3g fireworks for personal use unrelated to a public display per Indiana Code 22-11-14-2(f), which states that a "person may not possess, transport, or deliver special fireworks, except as authorized under [IC 22-11-14-2]." Indiana Code 22-11-14-2 authorizes the use of these fireworks for public displays only.

    In December 2019, the permit system for fireworks moved to the Public Safety Portal. Based on both statutory language and the General Administrative Rules (GAR), each display is singular in nature and requires its own separate permit for each date/shoot. Each date/shoot also requires its own separate approval by the fire chief for that municipality, regardless of whether it is a paid or volunteer fire department.

    Apply for a Permit or Certificate of Compliance

  • Use of Fireworks

    Location

    In general, consumer fireworks may only be used at:

    • Special discharge locations;
    • The property of the person using the firework; or
    • The property of another who has given the individual permission to use fireworks on their property.

    However, please note that a person who sets off fireworks, even in a legal location, may still be held liable for any resulting injuries or damage caused to another person or their property.

    Age

    Fireworks may only be used or possessed by individuals who are 18 or older unless an adult is present and responsible at the location of possession or use.

    Dates and Times

    Generally, state statute prohibits a person from igniting, discharging, or using consumer fireworks after 11 p.m. or before 9 a.m. On holidays, as defined in Indiana Code 1-1-9-1(a), a person may not ignite, discharge or use consumer fireworks after midnight or before 9 a.m. For New Year's Eve, a person can ignite, discharge or use consumer fireworks from 10 a.m. until midnight December 31 and until 1 a.m. January 1 (but not between 1 and 9 a.m. January 1).

    Please be aware local ordinances may limit the time frame for use of consumer fireworks even further. However, the following time frames are protected times when the use of consumer fireworks are not prohibited by state statute and may not be prohibited by local ordinance:

    • June 29 through July 3 and July 5 through July 9 between 5 p.m. and two hours after sunset
    • July 4 between 10 a.m. and midnight
    • December 31 after 10 a.m. until 1 a.m. January 1

    Chart of fireworks hours of use

    Use of Sky Lanterns

    Sky lanterns are not allowed to be released into the sky without having an anchor or being tethered so that they cannot freely lift into the atmosphere. See section 308.1.6.3 of the Indiana Fire Code, available at Indiana Administrative Code database (Article 22).

  • Additional Information