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Canada Day and New Years Eve are probably the city’s most popular days for Fireworks. If you plan on setting off a few displays in your neighborhood, here are a few things you should know:

Do I require a permit for my display?

YES! No person may ignite, fire or set off any fire-works or cause any fireworks to be ignited, fired or set off, and no owner or occupant of premises may permit fireworks to be ignited, fired or set off on the premises, without a Fireworks Display Permit issued by the Fire Department. A Permit is not required for hand-held sparklers or caps for toy guns if they are the only novelty being set off. Sparklers burn extremely hot and therefore care should be taken not to touch the sparkler at any time other than by its handle. Never touch another persons clothing with an ignited sparkler and keep away from peoples faces and hair. After a sparkler has finished burning, it remains extremely hot! Therefore, immediately douse it in a pail of water to cool it before disposing of it in a safe manner.

How much does it cost?

There is No Charge for a Consumer Fireworks Display Permit.

How old do I have to be to get a permit?

A Fireworks Display Permit may not be issued to an individual under the age of 18 years.

Is an inspection of my display site required?

Not Necessarily! In some situations where clearances to combustible materials or buildings are questionable, an inspection may be conducted by the Fire Department person to determine if the site is suitable for a fireworks display.

What clearances to combustable structures are required?

Your firing base ( eg. mound or non-combustible pail of sand or earth) must be a minimum of 20m (65 feet) away for fountains and other ground-based items from the nearest building. Roman Candles require a minimum clearance of 30m x 30m. (Approximately 100′ x 100′) Ensure there are no overhead wires, branches or other obstructions when setting up your display. Keep a metal pail or other suitable container partly filled with water for disposal of fireworks.

How old do I have to be to purchase fireworks?

No person may sell, offer for sale or distribute any fireworks, and no person being the owner, occupant or person in charge of any premises may permit any fireworks to be sold, offered for sale or distributed on the premises to anyone under eighteen years of age. The display must be under the conduct and supervision of at least one responsible person who shall be minimum eighteen years of age.

Where can I set off my fireworks?

Most residential properties will not be able to meet the above noted clearances. No person shall set off any fireworks in or into any building, doorway, automobile, or other place where such setting off might create a danger or nuisance to any person or property. No person may ignite, fire or set off any fireworks or cause any fireworks to be ignited, fired or set off in or on or into any highway, street, lane, square or any other public place except as otherwise permitted by this by-law and the setting off of “firecrackers” is strictly prohibited. Remember, all spectators should maintain a safe distance (recommended minimum 20m/65 feet) from the firing base.

What if I don’t own the property?

The applicant must provide written consent from the registered owner or owner’s agent of the land for which the Permit will be requested. No person may ignite, fire or set off fireworks on or over land owned by the City of Winnipeg or land over which the city has possession or control unless the person has obtained permission to do so from the City Department which has responsibility for the land; and has agreed in writing to assume all liability associated with the fireworks display, fully indemnifying the City and saving it harmless from any liability associated with the fireworks display.

How do I prepare for my display?

First of all, read and comply with the manufacturers instructions on all fireworks. Plan the firing order before you begin. Make a firing base (eg. mound of sand or earth) from which to set off your fireworks. Bury all long fireworks at least halfway down into the firing base. Light all fireworks at arms length, standing back and keeping your face turned away. Preferably use an “igniter stick” to set off your fireworks. Light carefully, and always light the fuse at its tip. Remember to protect your eyes with safety glasses or safety goggles! Provide a pail of water or garden hose attached to a water supply to be used if necessary as a fire extinguisher. Do not fire in windy conditions, and store fireworks in a cool, dry, ventilated place in a locked container, away from children.

Do I require a permit for a display at my cottage?

Check with the local Municipal Authority for the area where your cottage is located for any specific regulations or conditions that may apply.

What information do I need to provide for the permit application?

Any legal identification that has the applicant’s name on it such as a Birth Certificate and/or Drivers License that has a current address on it is acceptable. Also, remember to bring any written consent forms that are required if you are not the owner of the property. It is also recommended you obtain your permit well in advance of Holiday weekends in order to avoid any possible delays.

Where do I go to get the fireworks display permit?

Fireworks Display Permits may be obtained at any Fire Station. It is advised you visit the nearest one in your area, as the fireworks display site may require an inspection and approval by a Fire Department employee or on line.