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how to ship fireworks

How to Ship Fireworks

Fireworks ignite the sky with breathtaking displays, but behind the scenes, shipping these explosive wonders can be a challenging endeavor.

The firework business is booming! While the season is upon us, and it’s now the perfect time to stock back up. With there being many rules around hazmat shipping, it’s not too surprising how hard it can be to deliver fireworks. With that, there are many steps in the journey from shipment to delivery. Here’s how to ship fireworks safely and securely to advance your fireworks shipping strategy.

Shipping Fireworks


All over the globe, fireworks are a burning fuse to any event and are loved by many. Every year Americans are spending more than $1 billion on fireworks! As a result, about 268 million pounds of fireworks are purchased, shipped, and launched into stunning displays.

As a fireworks dealer, be sure your business is ready to ship to your hungry customers, safe and secure. Also, you want to be sure you understand hazmat laws at both national, local, and state levels. Due to the flammable nature of fireworks, they are classified as hazmat items. With the hazmat class, extra steps are needed to be taken as a fireworks dealer and shipper.

how to ship fireworks


Know About Hazmat Shipping


While some fireworks are classified as hazmat. Under those circumstances, there are things you need to know about shipping hazardous items. Because of the difference between hazmat shipments, due to the danger of freight is how shipments are classified. Although LTL (Less Than Truckload) shipments have a designated freight class, it helps classify the package’s weight and density. In addition, every hazardous shipment is classified under one of nine hazard classes. Ranked by the U.S.Department of Transportation (DOT):

  • Explosives

  • Gases

  • Flammable liquids

  • Explosive solids

  • Organic peroxides

  • Toxic and infectious substances

  • Radioactive materials

  • Corrosives

  • Miscellaneous hazmat

Although most of these classes hold class levels, some sit between for more specific items. For example, fireworks that you see on holidays as “display fireworks”, are class 1.3G hazmat shipment. ATF licensed drivers to manage this sort of cargo. While shipping low-grade “consumer” fireworks of class 1.4G, no ATF license or permit is required to accept or ship.

While knowing your shipment’s freight class and hazard class is a crucial step. However, the carrier you choose must be sure they have the space and ability to handle your shipment. A wrong freight or hazmat class could result in regrading of the freight. This is a billing adjustment after the shipment or for a missed pickup.

Licensing and Paperwork


Just as you need a qualified carrier to ship your fireworks. You as the shipper also need to be certified as a hazmat shipper. With that, if you’re not a certified hazmat shipper, your shipment isn’t leaving. Licensed carriers will not handle an unlicensed hazmat shipment. Visit the Transportation Compliance Associates’ website here to be certified as a hazmat shipper.

And speaking of handling your shipment, something else plays an important role in the process—properly filling out the needed documents. With approved carriers, you will have to be extra careful when filling out or looking over documents.

Here are the seven items that must be on your hazmat shipment’s Bill of Lading (BOL):

  • Identification Number – UN or NA Number.

  • Hazard class

  • Packing group (I, II, or III)

  • Hazmat material’s proper shipping name

  • Emergency response company’s name and phone number

  • Weight of the item

  • Packaging of the material

Having a correct BOL (Bill of Lading) secures a smoother process. This also lowers the risk of surprise charges months after your shipment is complete. Make sure everything is correct when filling out the official shipping paperwork.

Tips to Know Before You Ship Fireworks


While shipping fireworks, or any hazmat shipment, can be risky. With that, be sure to know that your cargo is packaged correctly is crucial. Some of the most common packagings that would work best with hazardous items are:

As far as the best packaging supplies for shipping hazardous materials all depends on your needs and your items. However, we put together a complete Guide to Freight Packaging. This will help you understand different types of packaging and what works best in your chain.

Another thing to remember is to read up on the state laws relevant to your fireworks shipment. While some states have no fireworks rules at all, others might have some laws. Always use within the law when shipping fireworks.

Partner with FreightCenter


FreightCenter works with fireworks wholesale companies around the country, supplying the knowledge you need for these classes of shipments. We can help you through all aspects of hazardous material shipping.

Let FreightCenter help! We are experts when it comes to shipping products both nationally and internationally. Our carriers and freight agents can ease you into the process to ensure it’s a smooth ride for both you and your shipment. Use FreightCenter’s freight shipping quote tool to begin. For our locations, call our international shipping experts at 800.716.7608. Saving money doesn’t have to cost more in the long haul: Let FreightCenter be your “one-stop ship.”


Shipping Fireworks FAQ


Q. Are fireworks allowed to be shipped?

A. Yes, fireworks can be shipped in the United States, but some strict regulations and guidelines govern their transportation.


Q. What shipping class is fireworks?

A. Hazardous Materials Division 1.4G explosives.


Q. Are there specific packaging requirements for shipping fireworks?

A. Each packing group has specific requirements. Using a 4GV UN Variation Box allows you to transport Packing Groups I, I, & III safely.


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