Berlin Fire Department
Paul Zbikowski, Interim Fire Chief
23 Linden St.
Berlin, MA 01503
Berlin Police Department
Thomas Galvin, Chief of Police
23 Linden St.
Berlin, MA 01503

For Immediate Release

Monday, June 26, 2017

Contact: John Guilfoil
Phone: 617-993-0003
Email: john@jgpr.net

Berlin Police and Fire Departments Offer Tips for Celebrating The Fourth of July Safely

BERLIN — The Berlin Police and Fire Departments wish to share an important reminder of several important safety tips as residents prepare to celebrate Independence Day.

Fireworks of all kinds are illegal in Massachusetts and open burning is only legal in the state between Jan. 15 and May 1. The Berlin Police will take enhanced steps in order to ensure that the ban on bonfires during the summer months is strictly adhered to and that fireworks are not being used at any time.

Berlin Police also want to emphasize that a recent change to New Hampshire law legalizing firecrackers has no effect on the ban on those items, which remains in place in Massachusetts.

Below is some basic information on the fireworks law in Massachusetts:

What is prohibited by the law?

Private citizens may not use, possess or sell fireworks anywhere in Massachusetts, nor may they purchase them legally elsewhere and transport them into Massachusetts. The law prohibits any item designed to produce a visible or audible effect.

What are the penalties?

A fine of up to $100 and mandatory confiscation of the fireworks, which cannot be returned.

Additionally, Berlin Police remind residents to be aware of these key safety tips:

  • Don’t drink and drive
  • Be mindful of pedestrians
  • Attend organized and permitted fireworks displays
  • Report illegal bonfires to the police
  • Remember: alcohol and fireworks do not mix
  • Keep pets indoors

“We want everyone to have a fun Fourth of July, and remaining safe and responsible can go a long way toward making that a reality,” Police Chief Thomas Galvin said. “Residents should seek out organized fireworks display this summer rather than attempt to put one on themselves due to the tremendous risk of injury associated with them.”

“Fireworks injuries are some of the most preventable  calls we can respond to as a department,” Fire Chief Paul Zbikowski said. “These devices can cause significant injuries and tragic outcomes, and we hope people will heed these warnings and remain safe as a result.”

For more information on fireworks, click here. For more on general summer safety tips, click here.

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