With the approach of Independence Day, we can all prepare for some fun, festivities, parades, food, and of course FIREWORKS. Crowds of people, mixed with open flames is something that can turn completely chaotic if the proper knowledge, and preparation isn’t applied. Professionals put on their own firework displays for the public to enjoy but of course there is still the fireworks that can be purchased at a local market or a firework stand. Although these fireworks are for the public to purchase, it does not mean that they are deemed safe.
Misuse of ignited fireworks can result in panic, injury, and even fires. The fourth of July alone has more than one in four fires that were initially started by fireworks. The National Fire Protection Association states “Fireworks start an average of 18,500 fires per year, including 1,300 structure fires, 300 vehicle fires, and 16,900 outside and other fires. These fires caused an average of three deaths, 40 civilian injuries, and an average of 43 million dollars in direct property damage.”
A few helpful tips to remember are listed below to keep you, your loved ones, your pets, and other individuals safe this Independence day.
- Obey any and all local laws regarding the use or distribution of fireworks in your area.
- Children should never use fireworks while unsupervised by a responsible adult.
- Keep your pets away from fireworks, or in a home if possible. Animals tend to run away on this specific holiday due to fright.
- Have a bucket of water nearby to snuff any remaining flames once done with a firework.
- Be certain to read the instruction on the individual firework, and check for any flaws it may have before ignition.
- Keep at least 7 to 10 feet from an ignited firework unless advised otherwise within the instructions of the firework.
- Fireworks should only be used in a clear area free of houses, vehicles, crowds, powerlines, buildings, and flammable terrain.
- Homemade fireworks are NEVER okay.
- A “dud” (a faulty firework that won’t ignite, or doesn’t perform as described within description) or flawed firework should never be relit, or “fixed”.
- Dispose of fireworks within a container that cannot catch fire, or combust.
Even a firework as basic as a Sparkler has been known to account for more than one quarter of emergency room firework related incidents. Many people also make the mistake of mixing firework fun with the consumption alcohol. Being under the influence can impair your judgment on proper precautions, and safety measures, so you may want to limit consumption and watch out for others who may not be as careful.
An accident can turn an exciting time into chaos, and panic. Being responsible of your own safety as well as for others, and pets, is necessary when dealing with such an exciting event. Below are a few helpful links to help you further prepare for, and avoid the risks of the upcoming holiday.