It’s time to celebrate America's independence by coming together with family and friends this July 4th. Every year celebrations across the country include swimming, barbecues, parades and of course, fireworks. Unfortunately, every year thousands of people are admitted to emergency rooms due to firework related injuries. Don’t be one of those statistics this year and play it safe with these firework safety tips below.
Know your local laws
In many cities across the country fireworks are illegal and have a zero tolerance policy for using illegal fireworks. Check your local ordinances to find out if fireworks are illegal where you live or where you are spending your 4th of July.
Fireworks should only be handled by adults
Never let children be in reach of or handle fireworks. Most firework injuries happen to children, even sparklers may burn hot enough to severely burn a child's hand. Adults should always be present to ensure everyone's safety, including teenagers.
Don’t use fireworks while impaired
Fireworks are dangerous enough as is but when mixed with alcohol or drugs the dangers are far greater. Impairment increases the possibility of injury to yourself or others.
Read the labels
Make sure to read all labels and directions on each firework device. All legal consumer explosives have mandatory labeling requirements.
Wear eye protection
If you plan to set off fireworks or stand nearby it is important to wear eye protection while doing so. Most hardware stores sell protective eyewear that can be easily purchased before you plan to set off fireworks.
Never set off fireworks indoors
Fireworks are extremely flammable so you want to make sure to only use fireworks outdoors away from any flammable materials.
Keep pets indoors
Pets go missing around July 4th more than any other time of the year and this is mostly due to fireworks. Pets can become extremely frightened by loud noise and may run away if outside. Consider putting your pets in an escape-proof room or crate during fireworks.
After you are done with your 4th of July celebrations it’s important to be responsible and clean up after yourself. Be considerate of the community and your neighbors by cleaning up used fireworks and other holiday decorations.