The Dangers of Fireworks and Safety Tips for Parents

Firework Safety for Children

Don’t let the fun of July 4th fireworks take you away from the fun and all the way to the emergency room. In 2018, over 9,000 people were treated for firework-related injuries and over half of them occurred around July 4th.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, the highest rate of these injuries were among children ages 10 to 14 years old. Stay safe and have fun during this holiday with these vital safety tips.

Fireworks Safety for Children

Fireworks such as firecrackers, rockets, and sparklers should simply not be used by small children. Even sparklers can reach temperatures as high as 1800 degrees Fahrenheit which is hot enough to melt gold!

If your children are old enough for sparklers, they should be closely monitored at all times to ensure the sparkler stays away from their skin, clothing, hair, and other people. If your child has longer hair, be sure to pull it back during the festivities and do not allow them to wear loose clothing that could present further danger.

Buy only legal fireworks! You can tell the difference by looking for the manufacturer’s name and directions. Legal fireworks will have them on every package, whereas illegal ones generally do not.

Do not buy M-80s, M100s, blockbuster, or quarterpounder fireworks. These were banned in 1966 for a reason! They are explosives – not fireworks. Also, do not try to modify your fireworks in any way. This includes tieing multiple fireworks together, or not following the instructions. Light one at a time.

Keep children a safe distance from any area where fireworks are being lit. They should also have shoes that cover their entire foot on at all times. Do not let them wear sandals or flip flops while fireworks are being lit or when they are participating.

It should go without saying, but do not let your children point fireworks or shoot fireworks at another person – EVER. If they are allowed to light fireworks, be sure they are in an open space and that all fireworks are pointed a safe direction away from people, trees, and houses.

Cleaning Up

Children should not be allowed to pick up what is left of the fireworks during the event, or after the event. Many fireworks can remain burning internally for a long period of time. Be sure to soak all extinguished fireworks in a bucket prior to putting them in the trash to prevent fires.

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