Fireworks packages in store
Mike Mozart / Flickr Creative Commons

Sales of backyard fireworks are booming in Ohio, at least partly because the pandemic has canceled public fireworks shows. But it’s still technically illegal to set them off in the state, despite efforts by state legislators to change that.

Ohio’s laws on fireworks can be confusing. You can legally buy products in Ohio that you cannot legally use here. Lawmakers have debated bills to change that but, so far, they haven’t made it through the full legislative process. Here's the lowdown on what’s legal and what’s not.

It was like a scene straight out of Alfred Hitchcock. Late on New Year's Eve 2010, thousands of birds rained from the sky in Beebe, Arkansas.

Some 5,000 red-winged blackbirds, European starlings, common grackles and brown-headed cowbirds suffered blunt-force trauma after colliding with cars, trees and buildings, an ornithologist from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission would tell National Geographic.

Always Shooting / Flickr

Before this Independence Day, many fireworks retailers in Ohio abandoned the form that buyers were been required to sign, saying they’d take their purchases out of state to set them off.

Ohio House Approves Bill That Would Legalize Fireworks

Oct 12, 2017
Fireworks packages in store
Mike Mozart / Flickr Creative Commons

For decades, customers at fireworks stores in Ohio have had to sign forms promising they will leave the state before setting them off. Now, the Ohio House has passed a bill that would loosen state regulations on fireworks sales.

Matt Buck / Wikimedia Commons

A bill in the Statehouse would make some home fireworks legal by the year 2020, a move being applauded by at least one local manufacturer.

Red, White and Blue fireworks viewed in Columbus' Arena District.
Nationwide Realty Investors

Some 500,000 people are expected near downtown Columbus on Monday for the 37th annual Red, White and Boom fireworks display.

Nine Injured In Northeast Ohio Fireworks Accident

Jun 29, 2015
Flickr / Creative Commons

Authorities say nine people were hurt after a fireworks box fell over and fired into a crowd in northeast Ohio.

Red, White and Boom; Fireworks Safety

Jul 1, 2010

Red, White and Boom, the annual Independence Day fireworks celebration, with executive director Michael Collins. Safety and legal issues related to backyard fireworks, with Ohio public radio statehouse news bureau reporter Jo Ingles, Phantom Fireworks vice president William Weimer, Nationwide Children's Hospital Center for Injury Research and Policy director Dr. Gary Smith, M.D., and Prevent Blindness Ohio president/CEO Sherry Williams.