The City Council approved a fireworks urgency ordinance at its June 8, 2021, meeting, which went into effect immediately.
Historically, Menlo Park has seen increased instances of use of fireworks in the summer months and specifically on and around the Fourth of July holiday.
All fireworks, to include “safe and sane,” are prohibited in the City of Menlo Park. Fireworks cause thousands of injuries every year, and most significantly pose a serious risk of fire. In addition, fireworks can cause significant anxiety in adults and children, especially veterans and others with post-traumatic stress, as well as pets.
There is a demonstrated need for enforcement tools with which emergency responders can hold those posing a significant risk to public health and safety through the possession and detonation of fireworks in this city. Police have the authority to seize, remove or cause to be removed, at the expense of the owner, all stocks of fireworks offered or exposed for sale, stored, or held in violation of the ordinance.
This fireworks urgency ordinance allows public safety to arrest and cite violators for the following:
- Sale or offer to sale fireworks of any kind or nature within the city
- Fire, discharge, burn or use fireworks of any kind or nature within the city
Additionally, possession of fireworks is a misdemeanor under California Health and Safety Code - HSC § 12761.
There is an urgent and immediate need to prohibit all fireworks within the city in order to protect the threat to public health, safety and welfare. The serious risk of fire conditions that are present in Menlo Park and surrounding communities, and the serious risk of fireworks-related injuries stemming from increased use of fireworks are circumstances that require enforcement of violators of this ordinance.