Honolulu Fireworks Ban

Out with the Bang: What the city’s partial fireworks ban means for you.

Photo: iStock

For Oahu residents who have been kept up all night on July Fourth thanks to noisy fireworks, this year will be different. As of Jan. 2, a new island-wide, partial fireworks ban put heavy restrictions on the pyrotechnics. The ordinance aimed to lower the number of fireworks-related injuries, decrease asthma attacks and other air quality-related health concerns, and cut down on litter from fireworks’ debris.

Here’s how the new system works:

A $25 fireworks permit, available from the Honolulu Fire Department (HFD) and at Satellite City Halls, allows residents 18 and older to set off up to 5,000 firecrackers. (The permit must be displayed where firecrackers are used.) Possession and use of fountains, sprinklers, aerial fireworks and other consumer fireworks are illegal. Firecrackers may only be used on holidays, including New Year’s Eve, Chinese New Year, Fourth of July and other cultural events approved by the HFD on a case-by-case basis.

Photo: iStock

The legal challenge:

Not everyone is happy with the ban. TNT Fireworks, the state’s largest dealer of consumer fireworks, has filed an injunction challenging the law’s “no-storage” policy on Oahu, stating that Oahu is the only suitable location for TNT’s main warehouse, without which TNT stands to lose more than $800,000 in fireworks intended for legal sale on Neighbor Islands. The City Council is considering a bill that would permit warehouse storage on Oahu of fireworks intended for legal sale on Neighbor Islands.

The Amnesty Program:

If you have leftover fireworks, you can dispose of them safely via the HFD and Honolulu Police Department’s fireworks amnesty program. Select fire stations will accept the now-illegal fireworks, no questions asked, on the weekends of July 9-10 (Mililani Mauka, Moanalua, Sunset Beach and Wahiawa fire stations) and July 16-17 (Hawaii Kai, Kakaako, Kalihi Kai and McCully-Moiliili fire stations). Drop-offs are allowed between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. It’s recommended you place the fireworks in your trunk in a cardboard box or plastic bucket with lid, and drop them directly at the nearest station, rather than driving around with them while you do other errands.

If you have questions about the law or the amnesty program, contact the HFD’s Fire Prevention Bureau, at 723-7162.

Photo: Courtesy Hilton Hawaiian Village

Any Excuse to Party

Since 1986, the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikiki has put on a fireworks show every Friday, starting at 7:45 p.m. with about 1,100 explosions, or shots. Sure, it’s designed to wow the tourists, but the free show is visible from many places in Honolulu. For the best viewing within the Hilton Hawaiian Village, concierge Brian Kumura suggests a reservation at oceanside Bali Steak & Seafood restaurant. Off-site, there’s prime viewing of the display from Magic Island, Ala Wai Harbor, Hale Koa Beach and the Ala Wai side of the Hilton Hawaiian lagoon.