Many people celebrate Independence Day with family cookouts and fireworks. Fireworks are beautiful and often seen as entertainment, we need to remember that they are explosives and have a lot of potential for harm.
Sparklers are a popular firework choice for children. These fireworks can reach about 1,200 – 2,000 degrees and can cause severe burns. Just because they are legal does not make them safe for use.
According to the National Safety Council, in 2017, nearly 13,000 people sought medical treatment from their fireworks related injuries. This number doesn't reflect the number of individuals that didn't seek professional treatment. The National Fire Protection Association reports that there are more fires on July fourth than any other day of the year due to misuse and malfunctioning fireworks.
If you choose to shoot fireworks this July 4th holiday, keep in mind these safety tips:
- Do not use under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Use fireworks outdoors (but not near dry brush or grass).
- Obey your state and local laws.
- Always have water and a fire extinguisher handy.
- Only use fireworks for their intended purpose. Read directions prior to use.
- Make sure an adult is always present to supervise firework activities.
- Keep young children at a safe distance from all fireworks.
- Never relight or stand over a "dud" firework. Put it out or soak with water.
- Do not use homemade fireworks or illegal explosives.
Attending a professional fireworks show, instead of using fireworks at home is often the safest and most relaxing way to enjoy fireworks on the fourth.
For more information about firework safety, visit:
- National Fire Protection Association
- National Safety Council
- United States Consumer Product Safety Commission