Some of the fireworks seized from the Ramsgate storage unit by Kent Trading Standards and Kent Police.
Kent County Council’s Trading Standards and Kent Police seized thousands of pounds worth of fireworks in a joint raid.
In a second joint operation, officers confiscated another large haul of fireworks from a house in Margate.
Sales at both venues were being advertised on Facebook before the legal sales period from October 15 to November 11.
Trading Standards Manager Mark Rolfe said a single spark could have caused an explosion big enough to destroy the whole depot.
The fireworks themselves were authentic and found in 23 boxes, retailing for between £300 and £500.
The owners of the Ramsgate storage unit were not aware of the precise contents, they had been asked to insure them for £11,000.
Mr Rolfe said: “To picture that amount of explosive, that’s two wholesale-size sacks of potatoes of pure gunpowder – which would make a fairly significant explosion.
“The storage conditions were totally unsafe with standard electrical fittings running above the fireworks. The expert advice we have been given is that one spark from a failing fluorescent tube could have destroyed the building.”
The raid on the storage depot involved four officers from Trading Standards and four from the Kent Police Rural Partnership Team.
They cut the padlock to break into the unit. A 34-year-old man was later questioned and investigations are continuing.
The second raid, at a house in the Millmead area, uncovered 20kg of fireworks.
Mr Rolfe said: “This was not as big a haul as the other, but they were still being stored in a dangerous condition and could easily have caused an explosion.”
The fireworks have been removed to a safe store under Trading Standards control and enquiries to identify the seller are under way.
Chief Insp Lee Russell, from Kent Police Partnerships and Communities, said: “We are continuing to work with Trading Standards on this issue, which is particularly important at this time of year. This is not just a matter of the damage that such incidents can cause, but the threat to personal safety and possible serious injury.”
Mr Rolfe said: “In both cases, these were simply ridiculous conditions for the storage of fireworks.
“We urge anyone who needs to store large quantities of fireworks, or anyone who has concerns about illegal storage in their neighbourhood, to check with us about that the venue is appropriate and safe. If not, there is the chance that someone could die in an explosion.”
Contact KCC Trading Standards on 08454 040506 or e-mail email@example.com