We spoke with Donna Bryan from the Safety Council of Palm Beach County, Inc.
The Fourth of July is always associated with fireworks. Most people don’t realize that setting of fireworks is illegal, with the exception of sparklers. Each person buying fireworks signs a waiver. The waiver states that the buyer is using the fireworks to scare off animals from farms, or fish hatcheries! Most buyers don’t realize this.
Remember, fireworks can be dangerous, causing serious burn and eye injuries. The Safety Council encourages people to attend professional fireworks celebrations, which are spectacular and free. There are 9,800 injuries annually due to fireworks, and 7,000 of these require hospitalization.
If you insist on using fireworks, follow these safety tips when using fireworks:
1) Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.
2) Avoid buying fireworks that are packaged in brown paper because this is often a sign that the fireworks were made for professional displays and that they could pose a danger to consumers.
3) Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities. Parents don't realize that young children suffer injuries from sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees - hot enough to melt some metals.
4) Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.
5) Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully. Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
6) Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap. Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.
7) Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
8) After fireworks complete their burning, douse the spent device with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding it to prevent a trash fire.
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