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NORTH FORSYTH — If the lines at local stores are any indication, Georgia’s new fireworks law is a booming success.
Ashley Mayabb, a clerk at the TNT fireworks store on Browns Bridge Road in northern Forsyth County, said she’s seen a steady stream of customers through her store.
“Everybody’s excited that we can finally sell these, I’m pumped about it,” she said.
The sale of large fireworks became legal Wednesday for the first time in Georgia. Sparklers and fireworks that didn't lift far off the ground were previously allowed.
Mayabb did say that some customers are finding one part of the new law confusing. Temporary tent locations are not allowed to sell the new more powerful fireworks.
“Lots of the people coming here have been to one of the tents first, and found out they had to come to a real store to get these,” said Mayabb as she held up a pack of Roman candles.
The new law limits sales during the first year to permanent locations, with tents beginning next summer.
As she was paying for two large bags of fireworks Wednesday, Cumming resident Patti Pinkus said she’s glad to be able to let her children enjoy the holiday experience.
“It should be fun, we’ve never bought these before,” she said. “… I’ve done this once, but that was years ago. I’m so glad this changed.”
Her son, Christopher, said he’s planning on a big display.
“I think the neighbors will be right out there with us,” he added.
William Weimer, vice president of Phantom Fireworks, which has a location in nearby Buford, said the company was ready for the new customers who’d never used the more powerful fireworks.
“Everyone leaves with safety tips stapled to their receipts, and there are specific instruction cards for each item on the displays,” he said.
According to Weimer, company officials weren’t sure what to expect in Georgia, since this was the first time they have had a state start sales this close to Independence Day.
“We usually have a run-up, and time to learn,” he said. “Here we had no idea what would happen. But sales have exceeded our expectations.”
He said Phantom plans to keep its three locations in Georgia, including one in Buford, open year round, and likely will add more.
According to TNT officials, the store on Browns Bridge Road also will be open year round.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.