Have fun but use caution this holiday weekend

With the Fourth of July right around the corner, some people are scrambling to finalize their shopping lists and to-do lists for the big holiday. But the Red Cross wants to remind the public that there is a few other things to keep in mind on Independence Day.

The website, www.redcross.org, states, “If you are setting fireworks off at home, follow these safety steps:

≤ Never give fireworks to small children, and never throw or point a firework toward people, animals, vehicles, structures or flammable materials. Always follow the instructions on the packaging.

≤ Keep a supply of water close by as a precaution.

≤ Make sure the person lighting fireworks always wears eye protection.

≤ Light only one firework at a time and never attempt to relight “a dud.”

≤ Store fireworks in a cool, dry place away from children and pets.”

The holiday weekend is all about family fun, but it’s also crucial to remember just how dangerous fireworks can be. The National Safety Council website states that in 2017, eight people died and over 12,000 were injured badly enough to require medical treatment after fireworks-related incidents. Of these, 50% of the injuries were to children and young adults under age 20. Over two-thirds (67%) of injuries took place from June 16 to July 16. And while the majority of these incidents were due to amateurs attempting to use professional-grade, homemade or other illegal fireworks or explosives, an estimated 1,200 injuries were from less powerful devices like small firecrackers and sparklers.

It’s also important to remember that each city has its own rules and regulations when it comes to fireworks. Please check the rules your city has issued before the weekend’s festivities. Let freedom ring, but do so with safety in mind.


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