Fireworks illegal in Suffolk; enjoy city’s July 4 display

Published 7:24 pm Friday, June 30, 2023

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The Suffolk Fire Marshal’s Office urges local residents to play it safe and follow the law when celebrating Independence Day, while reminding everyone city code prohibits the use or sale of fireworks in Suffolk’s city limits. 

Each July 4, thousands of people, most often children and teens, are injured while using consumer fireworks. Despite the dangers of fireworks, few people understand the associated risks: devastating burns, other injuries, fires and even death.

Suffolk Fire and Rescue Department and the National Fire Protection Association encourage people to enjoy public displays of fireworks, as the safest way to prevent fireworks-related injuries is to leave fireworks displays to trained experts. Preparing for a day of family barbeques and holiday excitement is no fun if it includes a trip to the emergency room due to improper handling of fireworks. 

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NFPA notes that fireworks start an average of 19,500 fires per year. Burns account for 44% of the 9,100 injuries treated in emergency rooms seen in the month around July 4. Half of the fireworks injuries seen at emergency rooms were extremities: hand, finger, or leg. One-third were to the eye or other parts of the head. Children ages 10 to 14 had the highest rate of fireworks injury, with more than one-third of the victims of fireworks injuries under age 15. Sparklers account for roughly one-quarter of emergency room fireworks injuries – sparklers burn at 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit.

Leave it to the professionals, the city’s news release recommends by enjoying Suffolk’s Stars and Stripes Spectacular Tuesday, July 4 as the skies light up with a fireworks show over the beautiful Nansemond River at Constant’s Wharf Park and Marina. Admission is free for all ages. The park opens at 5:30 p.m. with several food trucks and merchandise vendors on-site and available for purchase, including beer for those 21 years and older (IDs are required). Those attending are encouraged to bring a chair or blanket for seating. A children’s area featuring bounce houses and crafts will be available, along with other outdoor games. 

Rocky 7 takes the stage at 6 p.m. with a repertoire of songs in a variety of styles. The fireworks show begins at 9 p.m. 

There is no on-site parking for this event, officials noted in the release. Shuttle stops are available at First Baptist Church, 237 N. Main St., and the Godwin Courthouse Building, 150 N. Main St. Shuttles, running from 5:15 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. and again once fireworks are complete. 

For more information on the event, contact Suffolk Parks and Recreation at 757-514-7256 or