Regulation of Restricted Fireworks
(a) For the purposes of this
section the following definitions shall apply:
(1) "Restricted fireworks"
means only those items classified under 49 C.F.R. Sec. 173.100(r)(2) (10-1-86
edition), as "skyrockets with sticks" and "missiles with fins". (2) "Drought
conditions" shall mean the existence immediately preceding or during the
fireworks season of a long-term deficit of moisture creating atypically
severe conditions with increased wildfire occurrence as defined by the
Texas Forest Service through the use of the Keetch-Byram Drought Index,
or when such index is not available, through a comparable measurement which
takes into consideration the burning index, spread component, or ignition
component for that particular area.
(b) (1) The Texas Forest
Service in the ordinary course of its activities hall determine whether
drought conditions, as defined under Subsection a (2) exist in all or part
of any county requesting such determination. The Texas Forest Service shall
make available the measurement index guidelines that determine whether
a particular area is in drought condition. Following any determination
that such drought conditions exist, the Texas Forest Service shall notify
said county or counties when such drought conditions no longer exist. (3)
The Texas Forest Service shall be allowed to take such donations of equipment
or funds as necessary to aid in the carrying out of this section.
(c) Upon a determination
under this section that drought conditions exist within all or part of
a specified county, the commissioners court of such county by order may
prohibit or restrict the sale or use of restricted fireworks in all or
a portion of the unincorporated area of the county where drought conditions
have been determined to exist. In addition, during the December fireworks
season, the commissioners court of a county by order may restrict or prohibit
the sale or use of restricted fireworks in specified areas when conditions
on rural acreage in the county not under cultivation for a period of at
least 12 months are determined to be extremely hazardous for the danger
of fire because of high grass or dry vegetation.
(d) To facilitate compliance
with an order adopted under Subsection (c), the order must be adopted before:
(1) June 15 of each year for the Fourth of July fireworks season; and (2)
December 15 of each year for each December fireworks season.
(e) An order issued under
this section shall expire upon determination as provided under Subsection
(b) that such drought conditions no longer exist.
(f) The county may designate
one or more areas of appropriate size and accessibility in the county as
safe areas where the use of restricted fireworks is not prohibited. The
safe area may be provided by the county, a municipality within the county,
or an individual, business, or corporation. A safe area may be designated
in and provided in the geographic area of the regulatory jurisdiction of
a municipality if the activity conducted in the safe area is authorized
by general law or a municipal regulation or ordinance. An area is considered
safe if adequate public safety and fire protection services are provided
to the area. A county, municipality, individual, business, or corporation
is not liable for injuries or damages resulting from the designation, maintenance,
or use of the safe area.
(g) A person selling any
type of fireworks, including restricted fireworks, in a county that has
adopted an order under Subsection (c) shall, at every location at which
the person sells fireworks in the county, provide reasonable notice of
the order and reasonable notice of any location designated under Subsection
(f) as a safe area.
(h) An affected party is
entitled to injunctive relief to prevent the violation or threatened violation
of a requirement or prohibition established by an order adopted under this
(i) A person commits an offense
if the person knowingly or intentionally violates a prohibition established
by an order issued under this section. An offense under this subsection
is a Class C misdemeanor.