This awareness month runs a little over a month leading up to Independence Day on July 4th. Every year around this time, we see injuries and accidents stemming from improper use of fireworks.Between June 22, 2012 and July 22, 2012, there were a reported 5,000 people treated in hospital emergency rooms. The most common injuries are burned hands, head and face but more serious injuries could occur.
According to the National Council on Fireworks Safety, here are some suggestions for anyone planning to light off fireworks this year:
- Always purchase fireworks from a reliable source.
- Use fireworks as directed on consumer product safety label; never alter products.
- Observe local laws and use good COMMON SENSE.
- Have a designated shooter to organize and shoot your family show.
- A responsible ADULT should supervise all firework activities.
- Parents should not allow young children to handle or use fireworks.
- Alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Save your alcohol for after the show.
- Use fireworks OUTDOORS in a clear area; AWAY from buildings and vehicles.
- NEVER carry fireworks in your POCKET.
- Wear safety glasses whenever using fireworks.
- Always have water ready if you are shooting fireworks.
- Do not experiment with homemade 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 trashcan.
- Report illegal explosives, like M-80s and quarter sticks, to the fire or police department.
And of course, always have a fire extinguisher on hand that is equipped with a MIJA pressure gauge. This way, you’ll always know that your fire extinguisher is fully charged and ready to use when you need it most.
Stay safe this 4th of July!