A few years ago NJ eased up on their fireworks restrictions, but compared to most other states, we're still very strict. We can buy big packages of fireworks at Target or Walmart or ShopRite, but those places offer fireworks that stick to the guidelines that only allow stuff like sparklers, smoke bombs, and other "non-aerial" devices.

"Non-aerial" is the sticking point here, because despite seeing plenty of professional-looking fireworks around my neighborhood, they are still technically illegal. According to the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, things like bottle rockets, firecrackers, and roman candles are all still illegal. With official town-sponsored fireworks displays being postponed and cancelled, the number of backyard pyrotechnic shows has been increasing and will only grow heading into Independence Day Weekend.

The Brick Township Police Department posted on Facebook to remind residents which fireworks are allowed and which are not, and also included a very stern warning to those who choose to break the law:

To the points the police made:
1 - They're right, those types of fireworks are technically illegal, and if you break the law, you have to be prepared to deal with the consequences. I might not agree that fireworks should be illegal, but there's nothing I can do about that right now (until some political candidate runs their campaign around legalizing them).
2 - It does suck if your baby is woken up or your dogs freak out...but that's a peripheral problem. There are plenty of loud noises that could wake a baby, you can't make "noise" illegal. I have two dogs, and one of them has major anxiety when he hears fireworks. I feel bad for him, we try to calm him down and hold him on our laps, but that's pretty much all you can do, I'm not going to make everyone else accommodate my pet.
3 - Extra patrols just for fireworks seems excessive to me.

With threats of a fine of $1,000 and SIX MONTHS of jail time, it seriously is not worth it just to light up your backyard for a night.

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