Using fireworks on our nation’s birthday is as American as apple pie, backyard barbecues and parades on Main Street. Posted June 27, 2013
Keeping Safe with Fireworks
By BREANNA KAITFORS
Using fireworks on our nation’s birthday is as American as apple pie, backyard barbecues and parades on Main Street. Fireworks can be a really safe and fun activity for families if a few common sense rules are followed.
Fireworks today are safer than ever before thanks to numerous consumer tests that are always going on. However, fireworks related accidents do happen every year. Approximately 1,000 people each year go in for emergency room treatment for firework related injuries. Of those cases, 5% of these are considered “serious accidents,” which means they require staying in the hospital for one or more nights.
Most of these accidents could be eliminated if some basic safety steps are taken.
The National Council on Fireworks Safety offers these common sense safety tips for using consumer fireworks in the hopes that injuries to consumers can be greatly reduced this season:
• Parents and caretakers should always closely supervise teens if they are using fireworks.
• Parents should not allow young children to handle or use fireworks.
• Fireworks should only be used outdoors.
• Always have water ready if you are shooting fireworks.
• Know your fireworks. Read the caution label before igniting.
• Obey local laws. If fireworks are not legal where you live, do not use them.
• Alcohol and fireworks do not mix.
• Wear safety glasses whenever using fireworks.
• Never relight a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
• Soak spent fireworks with water before placing them in an outdoor garbage can.
• Avoid using homemade fireworks or illegal explosives: They can kill you!
• Report illegal explosives, like M-80s and quarter sticks, to the fire or police department
• And note these special safety tips, if using sparklers:
• Always remain standing while using sparklers.
• Never hold a child in your arms while using sparklers.
• Never hold, or light, more than one sparkler at a time.
• Never throw sparklers.
• Sparkler wire and stick remain hot long after the flame has gone out. Be sure to drop spent sparklers in a bucket of water.
• Teach children not to wave sparklers, or run, while holding sparklers.
While watching the miraculous show in the sky, make sure to keep safe and have fun.