Celebrating Safely for the Fourth of July
Fireworks can be dangerous, and there are many risks to keep in mind when using them.
The Fourth of July, or Independence Day, is traditionally celebrated with grilling and fireworks. Unfortunately, fireworks can be dangerous, and there are many risks to keep in mind when using them.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), on the Fourth of July in a typical year, fireworks account for almost half of all reported U.S. fires, more than any other cause of fire. Fireworks can cause burns, injuries, fires, and even death. Because of the risks involved, NFPA officially recommends refraining from consumer fireworks and leaving the fireworks displays to trained professionals.
If you do choose to use fireworks yourself, keep these risks in mind and follow these tips from the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.
- Purchase fireworks only from an authorized retailer. Look for the seller’s license displayed. Never purchase fireworks packaged in brown paper.
- Follow the manufacturers’ directions.
- Keep people and pets out of range before lighting fireworks.
- Light fireworks outdoors, on a driveway or other paved surface and at least 25 feet away from homes and highly flammable materials.
- Any use of fireworks should be supervised by adults.
- Always keep a bucket of water handy in case of fire or other accident.
- Douse spent fireworks and sparklers in a bucket of water before disposing of them.
- Never re-light “dud” fireworks that have not fully functioned; wait 15-29 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water before discarding.