Pyrotechnics is any combustible or explosive compositions or manufactured articles designed and prepared for the purpose of producing audible or visible effects. Pyrotechnics are commonly referred to as fireworks.
What are the hazards associated with pyrotechnics?
Serious burns or death resulting from improper handling, storage and use of pyrotechnics.
What can I do to protect myself?
Employees involved in the set-up of fireworks displays should remove all potential sources of ignition, including preventing static electricity in the area where the fireworks are present. Proper clothing (all cotton garments) should be worn when involved in pyrotechnic activities. Never work with pyrotechnics alone. Be sure that fire extinguishers and buckets of water are on site. Finally, but perhaps the most important, always plan for the unexpected when setting up a fireworks display.
What resources are available to assist employers?
These presentations on personal protective equipment (PPE) and hazard communication are available and can assist employers in training their staff. The presentation should be modified to address site-specific conditions and hazards.
In addition, the education, training and technical assistance bureau provides free online safety and health training and outreach services (i.e., speaker's bureau requests, safety booths) upon request.
Lastly, the NCDOL Library offers free safety and health videos (including streaming video services) and related research assistance on consensus standards (i.e., ANSI, NFPA, NEC).
Safety and Health Programs
A-Z Safety and Health Topics
The consultative services bureau provides free and confidential onsite consultation regarding worksite safety and health hazards.
Which standards apply?
OSH has adopted the following standards which are applicable to pyrotechnics in North Carolina. Note: Please also check the standards information and activity webpage to see if there has been any recent or upcoming regulatory activity on this topic.
29 CFR 1910.109 – explosives and blasting agents
29 CFR 1910.119 – process safety management of highly hazardous chemicals
General Duty Clause
NCGS 95-129(1) - general duty clause (for fireworks displays)
Additional OSH standards applicable to the manufacturing, storage and use of pyrotechnics include:
29 CFR 1910.132 – personal protective equipment, general requirements
29 CFR 1910.133 – eye and face protection
29 CFR 1910.138 – hand protection
29 CFR 1910.307 – hazardous (classified) locations
29 CFR 1910.1200 – hazard communication
Other Applicable Standards
The Which OSHA Standards Apply webpage can also help identify other standards that may be applicable to your worksite.
Where can I learn more?
Compliance Directive: CPL 02-01-053, Manufacturing, Storage, Sale, Handling, Use and Display of Pyrotechnics, establishes the enforcement policy and a comprehensive compliance policy for the inspection of workplaces involved in the manufacturing, storage, sale, handling, use and display of pyrotechnics.
Compliance Directive: CPL 03-00-021, PSM Covered Chemical Facilities National Emphasis Program, establishes an OSHA National Emphasis Program (NEP) for inspecting facilities with highly hazardous chemicals (HHCs) in amounts at or greater than the threshold quantities listed in 29 CFR 1910.119 and applies to the manufacture of pyrotechnics where the HHC threshold quantities are reached.
Industry Guide 49 - OSHA General Industry Standards Requiring Programs, Inspections, Procedures, Records and/or Training, includes requirements for standards related to pyrotechnics in general industry.
If you would like to receive interpretive guidance on this or any other OSH standard or topic, you can submit your questions using the Ask OSH web form, by e-mail to email@example.com or by calling 919-707-7876.