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Joyce Blaschke, Santa Cruz Police Department (831) 420-5844
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Sky Lanterns are Prohibited in California
Sky Lanterns are prohibited throughout the State of California. The use of sky lanterns are citable through the Santa Cruz Municipal Code 19.05.140 SECTION 308.1.6.3 IS ADDED – SKY LANTERNS. Section 308.1.6.3 of Chapter 3 of the Fire Code of the city of Santa Cruz is amended to read as follows: 308.1.6.3 – Sky lanterns. A person shall not release or cause to be released a sky lantern. Sky Lanterns are also prohibited by several laws and codes including the Health and Safety Code, T-19 Public Safety Code, the Public Resources Code, and the International Fire Code. California State Fire Marshal’s Information Bulletin about Sky Lanterns regarding the codes that allow Fire Agencies to prohibit their use.
Sky Lanterns are made from combustible materials such as paper bags or light fabrics which then take flight by the heat from an open flame candle. These devices are a fire safety hazard and we prohibit their use. These lanterns can travel through the air and come down in areas that can catch fire.
In 2011, 800 acres were burned in Myrtle Beach, S.C. when a lit lantern landed on dry brush.
The following map shows which states have banned sky lanterns.