Fireworks at the turn of the year: Where and when can you buy rockets and firecrackers?
Created: 12/29/2022, 5:01 am
By: Astrid Theil
For many people, fireworks are part of New Year's Eve.
© Roland Keusch
Fireworks can be sold again for the first time in two years.
Where and when can rockets and firecrackers be bought?
And what else should you pay attention to?
You can read an overview of all the answers here.
Munich – For many, firecrackers and rockets are an indispensable part of New Year's Eve.
For the first time since 2020, fireworks can be sold again this year.
Those who don't want to do without it on New Year's Eve have the opportunity to buy rockets and firecrackers again.
However, the sale of fireworks is strictly regulated by law.
Explosives Act: Four categories of fireworks with different regulations
The Explosives Act at federal level is the legal basis for the rules relating to the handling of explosive devices.
In addition, there are some additional regulations at state level.
According to a publication by the German Bundestag, the Explosives Act contains four categories depending on the risk of injury.
Among other things, the categories have an influence on how many years and when exactly the respective fireworks can be bought.
The first category includes fireworks with a low noise level that can be used indoors.
These products are available all year round and can be purchased by people aged 12 and over.
These include, for example, table fireworks and sparklers.
The second category includes fireworks that pose a low risk.
They have a low noise level and can be used outdoors in a delimited area.
The sale is permitted from the age of 18.
They can only be sold in retail stores three working days before New Year's Eve and can only be used without a permit on December 31st and January 1st.
Rockets, batteries and firecrackers fall into this category.
The third category includes fireworks that pose a medium hazard and have an increased noise level.
It is intended for outdoor use.
Such fireworks can be purchased from the age of 18 and can only be used by persons with a permit or certificate of competence.
Center fireworks fall into this category.
Finally, large fireworks are assigned to the last category.
These are fireworks with a high risk of injury that should only be ignited by qualified personnel.
These are permitted from the age of 21 and may only be purchased by persons with a permit or certificate of competence.
Special regulations: Prohibited zones in big cities
The competent authority can approve exceptions in individual cases, but also designate prohibited zones.
Fireworks are banned in many major German cities.
In Munich, for example, there is a ban on category F2, F3 and F4 fireworks and other pyrotechnics in the city center from December 31, 2022 at 9 p.m. to January 1 at 2 a.m.
There are also special rules beyond that: Category F2 pyrotechnic articles that only have a bang effect (e.g. New Year's Eve firecrackers, firecrackers) are prohibited within the middle ring.
This year, after a two-year break, category F1 and F2 fireworks can be bought in retail again.
Products in the F1 category are sold all year round.
Category 2 fireworks only on three sales days before New Year's Eve: this year from December 29th to December 31st.
Buy New Year's Eve fireworks: December 29th to 31st in most discount stores
Category F2 fireworks can be bought in discount stores such as Aldi, Lidl, Norma and Netto.
Edeka only partially sells fireworks.
Fireworks are no longer offered in the large hardware stores such as Bauhaus, Hornbach and Obi.
Rockets and firecrackers can also be ordered in online shops shortly before New Year's Eve.
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In addition, private individuals may only store a certain amount of category 1 and 2 fireworks.
In an inhabited room, this is a maximum of one kilogram of net explosive mass (NEM).
In Germany, rockets for private use may only contain 20 grams of NEM.
For rockets with a higher NEM, a certificate of competency is required upon purchase.
Rockets are usually sold in a set of up to 20 pieces.
More than two such large packs should therefore not be bought.
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