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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Washington, DC 20226

February 12, 2003

Open Letter to All Federal Explosives Licensees and Permittees

Proposed Rulemaking Regarding Explosives Regulations

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) announces that it is issuing a notice of proposed rulemaking affecting federal explosives regulations. This action is taken, in part, pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) which requires an agency to review within ten years of publication, rules for which an agency prepared a final regulatory flexibility analysis addressing the impact of the rules on small businesses or other small entities. This notice does not implement the Safe Explosives Act. Regulations implementing the Safe Explosives Act have not been published as of this date.

Based on comments ATF has received in response to the RFA analysis, this notice proposes amendments to the explosives regulations relating to fireworks. It also proposes to incorporate into the regulations the provisions of an ATF ruling concerning alternate construction standards for storage facilities for explosive materials. This notice also proposes amendments to the regulations that have been initiated by ATF, as well as amendments that have been proposed by members of the explosives industry.

ATF welcomes comments on these proposed regulatory amendments by all interested persons. Comments, however, must be received by April 29, 2003.

Send written comments to: James P. Ficaretta, Program Manager; Room 5150; Bureau of ATF; P.O. Box 50221; Washington, DC 20091-0221; ATTN: Notice No. 968. Written comments must be signed and may be of any length. E-mail comments may be submitted to:, and must contain the commenter’s name, mailing address, and e-mail address. Written facsimile comments may be sent to (202) 927-8525.

Enclosed is the full text of Notice No. 968. Regulations implementing the Safe Explosives Act are expected to be published soon and will be sent to you separately. You may also refer to the ATF web site ( or contact the ATF Public Safety Branch at (202) 927-2310 should you have questions.