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Fireworks are an American tradition. According to the National Council on Fireworks Safety, backyard displays are expected to be at an all time high this year. “Consumers should purchase fireworks from a reputable company, check local and state laws and read all instructions before use. The fireworks industry has made great progress in improving quality and reducing injuries, however fireworks are EXPLOSIVES and as such must be handled with care and caution at all times.
Below are 20 common sense safety tips to follow that will keep everyone safe this holiday.
- Children Should NOT Handle Fireworks: NEVER let children play with or light any fireworks, they should only be handled by ADULTS.
- Do Not Use Alcohol With Fireworks: Fireworks should only be used by adults who are not impaired in any way.
- Follow the Laws, Use Common Sense: Do not use illegal explosives or alter any firework device, do not make your own.
- Use Fireworks On A Hard Surface: Only ignite fireworks on a hard, flat and level surface, not on grass or gravel. If you are using fireworks on grass, lay down a piece of plywood as a shooting surface. Watch out for dry grass, brush or any flammable items in the area that could catch fire.
- Use in a Clear, Open Area: Make sure that the area overhead is free from obstructions, such as awnings, tree limbs or wires. Keep audience at a safe distance from the shooting site. Never shoot fireworks in a metal or glass container.
- Keep Clear of the Fireworks: Never put your head or any part of your body over the top of any fireworks product. Never look into a tube to check on the item, never hold a lighted firework in your hand.
- Use Care in Lighting the Fireworks: Always light fireworks products with an extended butane lighting device, a punk or flare. Light the fuse only on the tip; use a flashlight at night so that you can see the fuse. Never use a lantern, torch or other flame-producing device near fireworks for illumination.
- Light Only ONE AT A TIME and move away quickly.
- Do Not Use Malfunctioning or “Dud” Items: Don’t persist with malfunctioning items. Never attempt to re-light, alter or fix any “dud” fireworks.
- Have Water Close By: Have a fire extinguisher, water supply, hose or bucket of water nearby. Assign some to be “the fireman,” whose job is to be alert and at the ready with a water source for emergency.
- Be Aware of Wind Conditions: Avoid lighting fireworks during strong winds. Light fireworks with prevailing wind blowing away from spectators. If there is a wind shift during shooting, you should stop or rearrange your shooting site to accommodate the shift.
- Use Care in Handling Fireworks: Do not carry fireworks in your pocket, be careful not to drop them and never smoke when handling fireworks.
- Never Use Fireworks as Weapons: Do not aim, point or throw any firework product oat another person or at any property.
- Proper Storage: Keep fireworks in a cool, dry place and dispose of fireworks properly.
- Only Use Fireworks Outdoors, NEVER INDOORS.
- Special Reloadable Rules: Never use a wet or damaged shell or launch tube. Insert shell all of the way into the bottom of the tube, flat end down. Never force a shell into a tube. Use only one shell at a time. Wait at least 30 seconds between loading shells. Never ignite a shell outside of a launch tube. Never take a shell apart. Never relight a fuse that fails to ignite the device. After lighting the fuse, move a minimum o f 20 feet away from the launch tube.
- Only Purchase Fireworks from Licensed Fireworks Dealers: Do not use illegal explosives; do not alter any fireworks; do not attempt to make your own fireworks.
- Protect Your Eyes: Safety glasses are recommended for individuals lighting fireworks and those in close proximity to the launch site.
- Use Caution With Animals: Keep pets at a safe distance, noise and lights of fireworks often frighten animals.
- Transportation: It is a violation of Federal Law to transport fireworks on airplanes.
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Feature Courtesy: D. F. Dwyer Insurance
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