New Jersey retailers stock up on fireworks ahead of July 4

Posted: Updated:
HAZLET -

Retailers all across New Jersey have been stocking up on fireworks ahead of the Fourth of July holiday.

Former Gov. Chris Christie signed a law last year allowing certain types of fireworks to be sold in New Jersey. But the law was signed very close to the holiday, which meant that many shops were not able to stock up in time.

But this year, with ample time to stock up, everything from small convenience stores to big box stores are carrying the items.

“It’s pretty cool. You used to have to go to Pennsylvania,” says Belford resident Darlene Casciano.

GUIDE: 4th of July fireworks in New Jersey
RELATED: Sparklers, party poppers now legal in New Jersey

But some fire inspectors are concerned because there are no regulations on who can and can't sell these fireworks.

“I have no enforcement on these right now,” says Hazlet fire inspector Paul Murphy. “All those stores, and now they're popping up in tent sales all over the place.”

The law did not legalize explosive or aerial fireworks like firecrackers, sky rockets or bottle launchers. But Murphy says that the legal fireworks can be dangerous for kids.

“The spin is that they're safe…it's consumer grade. I think that misses the mark,” he says. “If I see a product that has an astronaut face on it or a kitty-cat on it, who is that aimed at?”

The state's fire code could soon be changed to include rules that address the challenges of regulating fireworks, something that pleases Murphy.

“A lot of us worked our entire lives to protect people from fire and from burns,” he says.

Murphy says that he and other fire officials hope that the new safety regulations will be in place by this Fourth of July.

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