ND House refuses to lift bottle rocket sale ban

Associated Press

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — It's still illegal to sell bottle rockets in North Dakota.

The state House defeated a bill on Monday that would have lifted the 2-year-old ban on selling the fireworks.

Fargo Rep. Blair Thoreson says the law still allows people to possess and shoot off bottle rockets, and he says it's unfair just to penalize businesses that sell them.

The ban's backers say it helps prevent eye injuries, but Thoreson says household chemicals and the sun cause much more eye damage than bottle rockets.

Dickinson Rep. Nancy Johnson supports the ban. She says bottle rockets start fires and damage property, along with causing physical injuries.

The House voted 52-39 to defeat a bill to lift the ban on selling bottle rockets.

A ballot initiative is also circulating to repeal the ban.