Fireworks Handling Bill Gets Senate Panel's OK

The North Carolina Senate has unveiled a bill to respond to safety concerns after a July 4 fireworks explosion on the Outer Banks left four people dead.

A Senate panel agreed Thursday to legislation designed to improve safety standards for people who transport, handle and set off public fireworks displays.

Workers for a South Carolina company unloading fireworks from a truck died after a single blast at an Ocracoke Island marina. A fifth worker survived.

Current law requires that "experts" are responsible for the fireworks but provides no details on what constitutes an expert. The state fire marshal's office would set minimum training standards for display operators and require them to get a two-year permit.

The bill now goes to the Senate Finance Committee.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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