Should Fireworks be banned or controlled more?

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  #1  
Old 04-28-13, 09:07 PM
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Should Fireworks be banned or controlled more?

As many of you I am sure have heard the Boston bombers used fireworks to make their bombs if you haven't heard that here is a link to a video from CBS News Boston bombers may have used gunpowder from fireworks - CBS News Video . This is rather disturbing to me and given the fact that young children and even adults are injured every year by fireworks while not using them in a criminal way is it time they be banned or controlled more?

I personally like seeing the fireworks on New Years and the Fourth of July but personally think that maybe there should at least be more controls on fireworks than there are now. Maybe a mandatory criminal background check and instructions at least being required like they already do with guns. Or better yet only allow professionals to use fireworks. I wouldn't want to spoil anyone's fun but at the same time can't see fireworks being so easily sold over the counter.

To me this is entirely different than gun control issues and most laws in each state are good enough for me concerning guns. Also guns even in the wrong hands can only kill one person at a time but fireworks in the wrong hands can kill many at one time.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 12:55 AM
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If everything that had the potential to hurt someone was banned or rigidly controlled we would soon be eating nothing but raw food with our fingers. No more tin cans either since a can opener can hurt you as well as the sharp edge on the lid you remove. Glass jars would be out because if they break you can get cut by the broken glass. Absolutely no knives or forks could be allowed.

Forget about heat as fire is way too dangerous to be allowed. Nor could we refrigerate food because little kids have suffocated from hiding in a refrigerator. Not that we would have any electricity to run a refrigerator, or anything else because using falling water or high pressure steam to turn generators introduces so many hazards I couldn't begin to list them all, let alone the inherent danger of electricity itself.

What we DO need is EDUCATION! Education that fire can be harmful unless properly controlled. That explosives, even in tiny amounts, can be dangerous if you ignore safety rules. To my mind the biggest hazard in regard to fireworks is the insane labeling of some as "safe and sane" implying that a person (or structure) cannot be harmed by the improper use of these bombs.

I've played with fire my entire life, worked around high pressure steam all of my adult life, hung like a monkey from overhead structures where one slip would have me fall eighty feet or more, worked with and around electricity up to and including 26,000 volts, driven high-horsepower cars in excess of 100 miles per hour and I'm not even a little bit dead from it. I still have all ten toes, eight fingers and two thumbs. Both eyes intact and they still work fairly well despite my age. I have never had any broken bones nor have I ever been hospitalized as a result of burns. Yes, I have had my share of injuries over the years but none of them were even close to life threatening.

I don't think I am unique in the life I have led but I have had one overriding principle that has kept me safe over the years. I have always investigated the hazards in what I was to do and taken appropriate measures to alleviate those hazards as best I could. Most of it has been common sense but common sense is in pretty rare supply these days.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 02:53 AM
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Fireworks are banned in Georgia for personal use, and I don't miss them. However, it happened a long time before the crazy times. I agree with Furd, where do you stop. Will little old ladies have to register their pressure cookers?

a can opener can hurt you
I was stopped at Denver International checkpoint because I had a P38 on my key ring. Been carrying it for 20 years or more and never an issue. "Well, you can take apart an airplane with one of those" was the reply from the numbnut TSA agent. The logic person in me wanted to argue, but being late to a flight is not what the wife wanted.

Bottom line....Government can't protect us from ourselves. Only we have that power.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 04:14 AM
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Larry, I thought there was a fireworks manufacture in Georgia.
Maybe I'm thinking the next state up.

Locally, it's only legal to set off fire works on New Years and Canada Day without a permit.
Until recently, it was difficult to purchase unless it was near those dates.
I should mentione that they are still bruttally expensive here to purchase.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 04:30 AM
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May be Tennessee. Sort of like Lynchburg, TN. You may work at the Jack Daniel's Distillery, but you can't buy or drink it in the county......dry.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 05:06 AM
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If fireworks scare you you'll love learning how much power is contained in a gallon of gasoline and volatile it is. I am convinced that if it had not been in common use for so long it would be banned as too dangerous for the general public.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 05:10 AM
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Stupid, careless people get hurt by fireworks. Just like stupid, careless people get hurt by lots of things.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 05:18 AM
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I had a P38 on my key ring
My grandson almost got suspended from school last yr because he had one on his key ring. They called it a weapon Funny thing is he carried it to school everyday for over a yr before it became an issue .... or maybe before they noticed.

I had to go to the courthouse a couple of weeks ago, parked and walked into the building only to realize I needed to go back to the jeep and leave my pocket knife if I wanted to keep it. Definitely not the same world we grew up in. Fireworks were illegal in my county for a long time but legal in all the surrounding counties. They finally changed the law a few yrs ago, probably motivated more by tax dollars than anything else.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 05:35 AM
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Short Answer: No.
If any of you have seen how explosive gasoline is and how many people are injured by carelessness with it, you'll think twice about fireworks. You can supposedly make an explosion with fertilizer and diesel fuel but I have yet to try it.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 05:41 AM
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I had to go to the courthouse a couple of weeks ago, parked and walked into the building only to realize I needed to go back to the jeep and leave my pocket knife if I wanted to keep it.
I've had this happen a few times (not at the courthouse however). Heck, Disney Land in Orlando wouldn't let me keep the one I had on my keychain. The blade was about an inch long and would do less damage then any other key on the chain.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 06:16 AM
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What?

Should Fireworks be banned or controlled more?
Fireworks Banned?... Answer: NO...:NO NO NO: Anytime government at any level mentions the word "BAN." What happens. "PANIC" buying. Evidence is what happened to assault rifles.

Another example of "PANIC" buying for a food product is a company like Hostess mentions closing it's snack foods devision, what happens? Twinkes, cupcakes, donuts and other assorted snack foods fly off the shelves within hours as a result of "PANIC" buying...

Restrict, regulate and/or control fire works at the state, city, county level is far better. IMO. Never BAN. Doing so can also creates a black market!!! for such items. Fire works in many areas already banned. Yet some folks still obtain them for personal use despite the local laws.

Someone mention a BAN pressure cookers? ......:NO NO NO: Results would be the same as what happened to assault rifles and/or twinkes. "PANIC" buying. Did I hear the government is going to BAN pressure cookers? Excuse me. I'm going out to buy every pressure cooker I can find....

What's next??? Regulate the sale of pressure cookers? Dumb idea. HOW? One per month/year per person. Must pass a safety course, meet strict regulations, registration, demonstrate a need for one, attend training classes and pass a background check to buy one....

Where does it all end???

 
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Old 04-29-13, 07:20 AM
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I don't see any reason to change anything about fireworks sales based on this one event. It's not like we banned jet airliners and you can still buy fertilizer and diesel fuel.

As far as I knew, you could buy black powder in cans anyway. Maybe that varies form state to state, and maybe you need to have a permit to get it.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 08:11 AM
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"You can supposedly make an explosion with fertilizer and diesel fuel but I have yet to try it."

You can it's called ANFO - and I suggest you don't. Homeland Security will snatch you up quicker than you can say "what I did?" Google Timothy McVeigh or OK City bombing.

Droop - I think post OK City or maybe post 9/11 the Feds put some controls on fertilzer purchases. I'm not clear on the actual numbers but I think that purchases of a certain quantity triggers a reporting process. The bomb in OK City was 4800 lbs of ammonium nitrate.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 08:12 AM
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I still don't get the pressure cooker and fireworks. They are not exactly the most ideal items for what they where used.

Back on topic.... Locally, fireworks are restricted to over the age of 18 (or 19) for purchasing. Not sure if it's like that in most areas in the US.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 08:25 AM
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Mike - My understanding is that the use of pressure cooker bombs as IEDs is common in Afghanistan. They have been used in the US before. The heavy container allows the explosive pressure to build before release, getting more destructive power out of low end explosives like low grade fireworks powder.

From the WIKIPEDIA article on pressure cooker bombs:

Step-by-step instructions for making pressure cooker bombs were published in an article titled "Make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom" in the Al-Qaeda-linked Inspire magazine in the summer of 2010, by "The AQ chef".[10][3][11] The article says "the pressurized cooker is the most effective method" for making a simple bomb.[12] It describes how to fill the cooker with shrapnel and gunpowder, and to create a detonator using the filament of a light bulb and a clock timer.[13] Analysts believe the work was the brainchild of Anwar al-Awlaki, and edited by him and by Samir Khan.[14][15] Inspire's goal is to encourage "lone wolf" Jihadis to attack what they view as the enemies of Jihad, including the United States and its allies.[16]
 
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Old 04-29-13, 09:40 AM
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As to the P-38s on the keyring.....I had to go to Federal court one time (as a witness before you ask...lol) and had my keys in my pocket...I knew to leave my mini-multitool and pocket knife in the car but never thought about the dummy .45 round I had on my keyring. Now this has a primer with a firing pin mark and about a 3/16 hole drilled though both sides. I'm in uniform and as I go through the detector I dropped my keys, change and wallet in the little box for xray/inspection. The officer says "You can't take this" holding up the keys. I say...but it's a dummy and deactivated. Well, that got him all happy and he said you'll have to take it out to your car (which was parked in a parking garage 3 blocks away and I would have been late). I asked if it could just be left there in a drawer or something and I'd get it on the way back. Luckily another officer had heard and just reached out his hand.

Hour later I came back down...uh oh...different guys. Luckily one checked a drawer and there it was...he was shaking his head that the first guy had even taken it. I mean...it wasn't like a dummy grenade or a belt made out of dummy machine gun ammo.

And just so you know....this was in 1997! And these guys were carrying guns? I'd carried that keyring on airplanes w/o so much as a blink.
 

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Old 04-29-13, 10:01 AM
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Droop - I think post OK City or maybe post 9/11 the Feds put some controls on fertilzer purchases. I'm not clear on the actual numbers but I think that purchases of a certain quantity triggers a reporting process. The bomb in OK City was 4800 lbs of ammonium nitrate.
Yes, they did put controls on it, but they didn't ban it. I don't know the details, but they made purchases more traceable and the reporting process you mentioned.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 02:59 PM
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The fertilizer in question that you mention is ammonium nitrate and you are absolutely right if you buy over a certain amount federal law mandates that the purchase be notified to federal authorities and the local police. The amount I am not sure of but probably nowhere near what was used in Oklahoma.

In Maryland all fireworks sales were banned years ago and the only fireworks that are supposed to go off are the ones that professionals set off. Virginia has a similar law on the books and D.C. is still thinking about it but I believe has banned cherry bombs. I think too that sales over a certain amount of fireworks in D.C. is supposed to be reported to the police. Every fourth of July the police from Maryland and Virginia sit by the border and see if anyone buys illegal fireworks and if they do they are arrested once they bring the fireworks over the border. So banning can and does work and has helped to protect lives over the years and people still get to see fireworks displays all over the entire region.

An entire ban though might not be necessary though just a control over who can and can not buy fireworks to help protect the rest of society. Like with guns a gun shop owner can't sell to anyone with a criminal background and with somebody like those bombers if they are put on a watch list they shouldn't be able to buy fireworks where they are still legal. As to the pressure cooker no they shouldn't ban those nor the other things that others have mentioned after all there has to be some common sense. What I would like to see is making fireworks harder to buy by a terrorist after all you can't just go and buy dynamite anywhere and you need a special permit to buy it. Been like that for years with dynamite as it is very dangerous as can fireworks be made dangerous too in the wrong hands.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 03:32 PM
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Been like that for years with dynamite as it is very dangerous as can fireworks be made dangerous too in the wrong hands.

I grew up on a farm that had a box of dynamite stored in a tractor shed. My grandfather used it on stumps and boulders. I was taught that dynamite was safe, but blasting caps would ruin your day. He did not keep blasting caps around. He bought them as needed at a local feed store.
Times have changed, and IMO not for the better.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 05:36 PM
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It's pretty silly at the NJ-Pennsylvania border like in the Poconos. There are fireworks stores right on the Pennsylvania line. You cannot buy those fireworks if you live in Pa. You can buy them if you're from NJ but you can't bring them into NJ and they are illegal in NJ.
Figure that one out.
 
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Old 04-29-13, 06:52 PM
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That is my whole point PJmax there is a whole patchwork of laws concerning fireworks more so than with guns which in my view can make fireworks more dangerous. At least if they had some more federal regulations like you have with guns already then the states where fireworks are legal would be forced to keep track of things a bit more. People who don't have a criminal background would still be able to buy fireworks. If they are to ever have better controls over fireworks then both parties need to work in a bi-partisan fashion so the law is fair to everyone.
 
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Old 04-30-13, 05:09 AM
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Someone mention a BAN pressure cookers?
Seems like when someone uses a legal item for illegal purposes - everyone freaks out!
Locally there was a drug raid on an apartment near a college campus. The FBI was called in because the local officers found a small amount of fertilizer and a pressure cooker. Turns out the pressure cooker was used for cooking [duh] and the fertilizer was for growing their hallucinogenic mushrooms All this after they evacuated the entire apartment bldg A month ago those items wouldn't have been given a 2nd thought.
 
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Old 04-30-13, 05:14 AM
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"At least if they had some more federal regulations . . ."


Hedge - Some of us believe that there are already too many Federal regulations and too much Federal intrusion into our personal lives.

Incidentally, there were only 4 fireworks related deaths reported to CPSC for CY 2011. Three of the 4 died while attempting to use illegal (commercial grade rockets) devices. One died when a homemade device exploded. According to the CPSC fireworks injuries have not increased significantly in the 15 years of data the report presented.

Again, if some dirtbag wants to make a bomb they are going to get the material. Not too long ago there was a guy on the forum looking for help with making his own gunpowder. Black powder is relatively simple to make. Should the government also ban charcoal and sulpher?
 
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Old 04-30-13, 02:11 PM
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I agree actually there are too many federal regulations already. I just think that there should at least be an alert system just like there is with ammonium nitrate so the authorities can be alerted to something suspicious. Unfortunately with terrorists wanting to cause havoc we have to have some extra protection to see that things like what happened in Boston don't happen again. But a sensible approach not some crazy half baked ideas like what congress has had lately with guns. States too should take action and if they feel even stronger laws need to be passed then they should pass them.
 
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Old 05-01-13, 08:45 AM
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I just think that there should at least be an alert system just like there is with ammonium nitrate so the authorities can be alerted to something suspicious.
And how will they determine the suspicious amount? Every year we fill the back seat up with fireworks for the 4th of July. Would that be suspicious? Would a tractor-trailer full be suspicious?
 
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Old 05-01-13, 02:02 PM
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Anything over a certain amount being bought could be considered suspicious just like it is with ammonium nitrate and if the fireworks were bought out of season like what apparently was done with the bombers that too could be reported. There really is no need to buy fireworks anyway where legal outside of the fourth of July or New years and then I think the amount sold should be regulated.
 
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Old 05-01-13, 04:17 PM
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Hedge - The type of fireworks sold and in some cases the amounts sold are already regulated. What is to stop a would be bad guy from simply going to a dozen or more fireworks stores and buying the "regulated" amount.

Your argument for more regulation has the same flaws as the arguments for more gun controis. It ain't the guns and it ain't the fireworks.
 
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Old 05-01-13, 11:57 PM
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The type of fireworks sold and in some cases the amounts sold are already regulated
That is my whole point in some cases you have regulations and in some you don't as to a person going door to door and buying more fireworks there could be a computer data base.

I am sure with guns for instance that there are some databases in certain states that keep track of gun sales and sales to certain individuals. Above a certain amount of guns being sold then a red flag goes up and that person may be investigated. The amount would have to be large enough for suspicion before an investigation would be launched.

At the very least all states could be required to require identification before the fireworks were sold and that being entered into an individual stores computer. It makes it much easier to build a case against someone in case there is something like this again which I hope never happens.

Bombs of course can be made out of ingredients found in the ordinary household but if at least one thing could be better watched then this nation would be safer. At least one thing would be out of a terrorists hands or at least severely limited.

I think too that cameras should be required in places that sell fireworks as just having them there will act as a deterrent as they know they will be watched. Sure our liberty will be perhaps slowed down just like it is at airport security but it also saves lives. We are living in a different world now than we were years ago. I wish it were not so but it is true.

I ask that this thread be closed but still viewable for those who want to look at it. It is getting worn out.
 
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Old 05-02-13, 05:34 AM
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Most stores around here and fireworks tents don't have a computer system. Most of the tents don't even have electricity.
 
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Old 05-02-13, 07:38 AM
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When I was a pre-teen and interested in model rocketry I did my research in the library like everyone else did pre-internet. There in the city library I found an old musty book on the subject that described in exacting detail how to combine the raw ingredients to make solid rocket fuel, cook it in an electric skillet & pour it into a pipe

Since the invention of the printing press this information has ALWAYS been available and-- despite exponentially increasing unnecessary new laws-- will always be abused. We don't need more laws, we need more humanity.
 
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