HAMER, S.C. (WTVD) -- Retail sales of fireworks are setting records this year as cities across the nation cancel celebrations to keep crowds from gathering due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Just down I-95 and across the North Carolina state line, lies South of the Border (SOB) in Hamer, SC which is stocked up on fireworks for the Fourth of July. And, this year, sales are surpassing numbers in years past.
"Well, I'll tell you the truth, we've had people from as far away as Canada," explained Lola Jacobs, Manager of SOB. Jacobs says fireworks sales at South of the Border are double heading into the holiday week. The fireworks department is open 24/7 until July 3rd to meet demand.
She says the sales are encouraging for the business which was closed for several weeks once coronavirus hit the area. The American Pyrotechnic Association is predicting a bust for commercial display companies but it is expected to be a record year for consumer fireworks.
For shoppers at South of the Border, stocking up on fireworks that shoot into the air is part of the reason they make it a destination along their travels. South Carolina has some of the most relaxed fireworks laws in comparison to neighboring states including North Carolina where anything that explodes or is projected into the air is illegal.
In North Carolina, possessing, purchasing and using most all fireworks by untrained individuals could result in up to six months in jail. It is considered a class 2 misdemeanor and those caught handling fireworks could be fined up to $500.