Firstly, CNFA would like to thank those who came out and participated in the Annual CNFA Conference earlier this month! It was great to discuss important topics and get to know our members better.
CNFA originally planned for the conference to be in lieu of this newsletter, but we have some exciting updates that couldn’t wait.
Consumer fireworks are no longer regulated by the Province of Alberta
The CNFA’s hard work has officially paid off and we are proud to announce that changes have been made to the Alberta Fire Code (AFC) relating to consumer fireworks! As of April 1st, 2019, the Province of Alberta has announced that the AFC will be replaced with the National Fire Code- Alberta 2010 Edition and it will no longer regulate consumer fireworks. Essentially, a municipality now has the option to enact a fireworks bylaw, or leave fireworks to be regulated by the Federal Explosives Act. This is a BIG win for the Association and for our members! These efforts have been in the making for several years and the CNFA is proud of this success. Here are the changes that have been made to the AFC:
Fireworks, including low hazard fireworks (sometimes referred to as consumer or family fireworks), are regulated by the federal Explosives Act (Canada E-17). The Act deals with the manufacture, import, sale, and use of all fireworks and pyrotechnical devices using explosives. The current AFC 2014 edition and previous fire codes included additional provisions that varied from federal regulation. Following engagement sessions with stakeholders by Municipal Affairs in November 2016, there was broad support for making fireworks rules consistent with federal legislation and allowing local authorities to manage the use of fireworks in their communities.
Under the updated fire code adopted in Alberta, entitled the National Fire Code- 2019 Alberta Edition, rules for fireworks are made consistent with the Explosives Act and municipalities will as a result have additional flexibility to regulate fireworks.
The following bulletins on fireworks are no longer in effect under the updated fire code:
- FCI–10-01 Low Hazard Fireworks – Permits, Storage and Display
- FCI–10-02 Low Hazard Fireworks – Enforcement
Code Changes for Fireworks
Under Section 5.7. and subsection 3.2.10. of the AFC 2014, references to fireworks have been replaced with the following references under the updated National Fire Code – 2019 Alberta Edition:
1) The manufacturing, handling, transportation, sale and use of dangerous goods classified as explosives shall be in conformance with NRCan R.S.C., 1985, c. E-17, “Explosives Act,” and its Regulations.
184.108.40.206. Display Fireworks
1) The handling and discharge of fireworks shall conform to NRCan 2010, “Display Fireworks Manual.”
1) No person shall have in his possession, sell, offer for sale, give away or otherwise distribute, discharge, fire or set off firecrackers.
2) No person shall purchase, store, use or supervise the use of a pyrotechnic device unless,
a) the pyrotechnic device conforms to the requirements of NRCan R.S.C., 1985, c. E-17, “Explosives Act” and its Regulations and
b) the person is certified in accordance with NRCan R.S.C., 1985, c. E-17, “Explosives Act” and its Regulations.
Under the Explosives Act and Regulations, there are three classifications of fireworks:
- Consumer fireworks are low-hazard and designed for recreational use. They include items like Roman candles, sparklers, fountains, volcanoes, mines, and snakes. Classified as F.1.
- Display fireworks are high-hazard and designed for professional use. They include items like aerial shells, cakes, Roman candles, waterfalls, lances, and wheels. Classified as F.2.
- Special effect pyrotechnicsare high-hazard and designed for professional use. They include items like gerbs, mines, comets, and crossettes, as well as special-purpose pyrotechnics made for live stage performances and the film and television industry. Classified as F.3.
- Additional information for use may be found in the following references or these documents:
o Explosives Act – http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/E-17/
o Explosives Regulation, 2013 – http://laws.justice.gc.ca/eng/regulations/SOR-2013-211/
o Display Fireworks Manual 2010 – http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/explosives/fireworks/9903
o Pyrotechnic Special Effects Manual –https://www.nrcan.gc.ca/sites/www.nrcan.gc.ca/files/mineralsmetals/pdf/mms-smm/expl-expl/pdf/Pyrotechnics_Manual-Edition3_e.pdf
o Fireworks Use – https://www.nrcan.gc.ca/explosives/fireworks/9883
o Safety Codes Act Exemption Regulation – http://www.qp.alberta.ca/documents/Regs/2003_351.pdf
Consumer firework sales and use open in Red Deer, AB
There was a recent attempt to enact a new fireworks bylaw in the City of Red Deer that would essentially ban the use of consumer fireworks by the general public. The CNFA worked to stop it. We engaged with residents and learned that the majority wanted the ability to celebrate with consumer fireworks. Our efforts helped City Council arrive at the decision to vote against the proposed bylaw. Articles pertaining to this win can be found here:
Red Deer Advocate Article
The Association will continue outreach in the Red Deer community to ensure safe and fair access to fireworks, and a smooth transition to these new regulations.
ARE YOU A CONSUMER FIREWORKS RETAILER OR CUSTOMER IN ALBERTA?
DO YOU WANT TO HELP ENSURE YOUR MUNICIPALITY ALLOWS FIREWORKS USE?
SEND US AN EMAIL AT firstname.lastname@example.org AND GET INVOLVED!
Explosives Regulatory Division announces increase in the allowance of unlicensed fireworks storage from 1000 kg to 2000 kg
After several years of hard work, CNFA has succeeded in increasing the amount of storage allowed for unlicensed fireworks products from 1000 kg to 2000 kg. The CNFA recently received the following by email from the ERD:
“The proposal to increase limit for unlicensed storage of fireworks is planned to be included with our amendment #4 package. Our schedule is to finalize all policies for amendment #4 by the end of the year. The package will then go through the approvals process and we are looking at Canada Gazette, Part I sometimes early next year. “
If you have questions on how this effects you as a retailer, please reach out to us for more information.
Recent and Upcoming Events
Annual CNFA Conference, April 2019
CNFA member participants heard presentations from our government relations team, our Acting Executive Director, Melanie Sutherland, our technical consultants and from the ERD. If you weren’t able to attend this year, but still would like to obtain copies of the presentations, you may do so upon request to email@example.com.
Alberta Fire Chief Association (AFCA) Conference and Trade Show, Red Deer AB, May 2019
CNFA will be representing the industry again this year at the annual AFCA conference and trade show. With the recent changes to provincial legislation, Fire Departments across Alberta will have questions, comments and concerns for with CNFA will help address.
CNFA on Social Media
Make sure you follow the CNFA on social media and share our posts!
Plus, have awesome photos of fireworks shows you’ve put on or attended? We want to post them for everyone to admire!! Share them with us by sending a DM on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Have more ideas about what you’d like to see from the CNFA on social media? Share them with us too!