Blasting regulations are contained within the Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code. All permits, inspections and enforcement procedures concerning these regulations are the responsibility of the Harrisonburg Fire Department.
Questions regarding blasting permits can be answered by the Fire Department at 540-432-7703.
Who Needs A Permit
A permit must be obtained from the Fire Department to possess, store, use or otherwise dispose of explosives or blasting agents. A permit must be obtained for each project. When applying for a blasting permit, the applicant must provide the following: a valid certificate of insurance, a current hold harmless agreement and copies of each blaster's certification. Applications are available at the Fire Department Administrative offices at 101 North Main Street, Monday through Friday during business hours. Please allow for permit processing time.
The following fees must be paid to the City Treasurer:
Blasting Permit - $20.00
Storage Permit - $50.00
The use of explosives and blasting agents must be conducted or supervised on site by blasters certified in accordance with Part IV of the Virginia Certification Standards for Building and Amusement Device Inspectors, Blasters and Tradesmen. The blaster must provide the Fire Department with a copy of their certification and carry that certification during any and all blasting operations.
Exception: Persons conducting agricultural blasting operations on their own property.
The company or individual applying for a permit to blast must provide proof of insurance of at least $1,000,000, or more if determined by the fire official.
Exception: Agricultural blasting on the applicant's personal property.
A permit must be obtained from the Fire Department for the storage of explosives and blasting agents. All storage magazines must comply with the Institute of Makers of Explosives (IME) standards for storage and magazine construction. All storage practices must comply with the Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code (SFPC).
All blasting operations must be during daylight hours unless otherwise approved. The blaster or shot firer is responsible for the overall safety of the operation. The blaster must be assured that all persons and property are properly protected and sound a warning signal before blasting. When blasting in the close proximity of a structure or personal property, the blast must be covered to prevent flying rock. Blast records must be kept for each blast. These records are to be kept for at least three years and be made available to the Fire Department for inspection. Criteria for the blast record must comply with the Virginia SFPC. Seismic recording must be performed when exceeding the limits of the Virginia SFPC.
The Fire Department must be immediately notified of any disappearance of explosives or blasting devices, any damage to property, or any personal injury as a result of the functioning of an explosive.
Penalty For Violation
Violations are a Class 1 misdemeanor in accordance with the Code of Virginia. Each day that a violation continues after notification shall be a separate offense.