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Can you set off fireworks in the GTA on New Year’s Eve? Here’s what you need to know

Fireworks are a staple tradition during New Year’s celebrations. But the laws surrounding them differ depending on where you live.

Here’s what you need to know before setting off your own pyrotechnics on Dec. 31.

Toronto

The City of Toronto allows fireworks on private properties until 11 p.m. on Victoria Day and Canada Day only.

This means that on New Year’s, residents are not allowed to set off fireworks without a permit from the fire department.

Fireworks are also not permitted in public parks or beaches unless sanctioned by the city. Residents are also prohibited from setting them off in the streets or parking lots.

Anyone caught doing so could be fined between $600 and $1,000.

More information can be found on the City of Toronto’s website.

Mississauga

Mississauga, meanwhile, does allow residents to use fireworks on their own private property on New Year’s, up until 1 a.m. on Jan. 1. There are five holidays in total where private pyrotechnics are permitted.

Fireworks are not allowed on public streets, parks or roads without a permit—regardless of the holiday.

Mississauga recently increased fines for setting off fireworks illegally. As of Dec. 1, individuals convicted of improperly setting off fireworks on public property or property that is not their own could be subject to a maximum fine of $100,000.

The fines for illegally setting off fireworks were previously $5,000.

Just days after the announcement the city received nearly 100 complaints about fireworks being set off. More than a dozen videos were reviewed by CTV News Toronto at the time showing crowds of people setting off fireworks for Diwali in the parking lot of Westwood Square Mall, both in the air and on the ground.

City officials say they hope the increased fines will dissuade residents from using fireworks where they are not allowed.

Brampton

Private fireworks–as well as the sale, distribution or possession of fireworks–are banned in Brampton.

On its website, city officials say that residents are invited to attend city-led events with pyrotechnics on Canada Day, Diwali and New Year’s Eve.

Fines for discharging fireworks are $500, while selling them could cost $1,000.

It’s important to note that if fireworks are discharged from private property, the owner of that property may face charges regardless of whether or not they are involved in the act of setting off fireworks.

In 2022, just under 1,500 fireworks-related complaints were made in Brampton. The complaints cited excessive noise, fire safety concerns and litter.

Vaughan, Markham and Richmond Hill

Similarly to Toronto, fireworks are only allowed on private property on Victoria Day and Canada Day. A permit is required in order to use Pyrotechnics on any other day or holiday.

Residents are not allowed to set them off on public property, including parks or beaches.

Fines for breaking the rules vary.

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