According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), at least 3 people died and 11,100 people sought medical attention for firework related injuries in 2016. While these explosive, colorful displays have a way of bringing out joy and patriotism in us, if handled improperly they can inflict serious harm or death. Here are some facts and tips on how to properly enjoy your 4th of July fireworks.
Leave it to the experts if you can.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), fireworks cause around 18,500 fires annually. Legal fireworks as small as sparklers can still cause a huge explosion if not contained and maintained properly. It’s best to leave it to properly trained experts who have experience.
If firework displays at home are definitely a must for you and your family, then make sure to have access to all the proper gear. Have safety glasses available for everyone in the vicinity, have fire extinguishers, buckets of water nearby, and a loaded and ready to go hose close so that you can quickly extinguish any fire that might ignite. Also keep your phone close to contact fire emergency services in case anything goes wrong!
Never let children handle fireworks, even sparklers!
The NFPA strongly urges against children using consumer fireworks due to the amount of injuries they cause each year. Using a firework or sparkler can be extremely dangerous for a child and everyone around. Many children can catch someone’s clothes on fire with a sparkler (including their own), or set off a firework in their hand. Older children should be closely supervised by a responsible adult with an extinguishing method nearby. They should also be at least 6 feet away from anyone with their arm extended outward to their side whenever handling a sparkler. Here’s a video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N0uMUH6jta0 made by the NFPA to communicate the dangers of children using fireworks.
Common sense Fire Safety.
Always keep a water hose, bucket of water or fire extinguisher close by. When lighting fireworks, stay away from any brush or nearby trees and any kind of shrubs that could ignite; resulting in a possible brush fire or disastrous nature fire. Be far away from any buildings or cars, and steer clear of any fuel sources, gas, propane BBQ’s or any combustible materials like oxygen tanks. Be mindful of where you aim your fireworks and have them properly placed or anchored to avoid accidents. All bystanders should maintain a safe distance away from the point of ignition.
After your (SAFE and fun) firework show, it’s important to dispose of used fireworks properly. First and foremost, never attempt to relight a “dud” firework. Take all of the used fireworks and soak them in a bucket of water for 20 minutes before disposal, all of your fireworks and correlated firework materials should be thrown away in your trash can and not your recycling bin due to the contaminants.
Alarm Relay wishes you a SAFE and FUN 4th of July celebrating this amazing country and our freedoms! Stay safe and be well this Summer!