TNT Fireworks considers suing over city bans in Utah, sees dip in firework sales
Jun 28, 2021, 2:28 PM | Updated: 2:38 pm
SALT LAKE CITY — As cities across Utah continue to enforce firework restrictions due to dangerous weather conditions, TNT Fireworks is threatening to sue the municipalities that have banned the use of the product.
Under current state law, James Fuller with TNT Fireworks told KSL NewsRadio’s Dave and Dujanovic it doesn’t make sense that cities have the authority to place a full ban on fireworks.
“We don’t want anyone to present a risk. We don’t want anyone to get harmed or hurt. That is important,” said Fuller. “Our second responsibility is to those small business owners and charities. We have a responsibility on their behalf to represent their interests.”
TNT Fireworks hopes to meet with the governor
The company says it’s ready to move forward with litigation as soon as Monday but hopes to receive some clarification on the law from Utah Governor Spencer Cox and other state leaders before filing suit.
“To your question of whether we will file a lawsuit or not, no option is off the table,” Fuller noted. “We have an obligation to those small business owners we work with, and those charities we work with.”
Governor Cox encouraged the state legislature to enforce a statewide ban because he does not have the power himself to do it. One lawmaker has even called for a special session ahead of the July 4 and July 24 holidays to prohibit fireworks in Utah.
Lower firework sales this season
With firework and fire restrictions in place throughout much of the state, firework stands have either closed entirely or seen a dip in sales, according to Fuller. To Fuller, the decreased revenue could be detrimental to the organizations that rely on fireworks for fundraising purposes.
“We have seen some of our partners in the industry choose not to open up their stands and their booth, which we think is going to have a pretty devastating impact on some of the charities, the church groups, some of the youth teams, they rely on this fundraising opportunity each and every year,” said Fuller.
Fuller explained he wants people to use fireworks safely, especially during extreme drought conditions. However, he believes people know how to use fireworks responsibly and should be given the right to celebrate with fireworks if they feel comfortable doing so.