Firework Safety

Fireworks by the numbers

  • In 2011, fireworks caused an estimated 17,800 reported fires, including 1,200 total structure fires, 400 vehicle fires, and 16,300 outside and other fires. These fires resulted in an estimated eight reported civilian deaths, 40 civilian injuries and $32 million in direct property damage.
  • In 2012, U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 8,700 people for fireworks related injuries; 55% of 2012 emergency room fireworks-related injuries were to the extremities and 31% were to the head.
  • The risk of fireworks injury was highest for young people ages 15-24, followed by children under 10.
  • On Independence Day in a typical year, far more U.S. fires are reported than on any other day, and fireworks account for two out of five of those fires, more than any other cause of fires.

Source: NFPA’s Fireworks report, by John R. Hall, Jr., June 2013 andNFPA’s Fireworks Fact Sheet, Fire Analysis and Research Division, June 2014

 


Let’s have a fun and safe holiday this year by following a few safety tips:

Leave Fireworks to the Professionals

The best way to protect your family is to not use any fireworks at home. Instead, attend public fireworks displays and leave the lighting to the professionals.

If you plan to use fireworks, make sure they are legal in your area.

Be Extra Careful With Sparklers

Little arms are too short to hold sparklers, which can heat up to 1,200 degrees. How about this? Let your young children use glow sticks instead. They can be just as fun but they don’t burn at a temperature hot enough to melt glass.

Closely supervise children around fireworks at all times.

Take Necessary Precautions

Do not wear loose clothing while using fireworks.

Never light fireworks indoors or near dry grass.

Point fireworks away from homes, and keep away from brush, leaves and flammable substances

Be Prepared for an Accident or Injury

Stand several feet away from lit fireworks. Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks; douse and soak them with water and discard them safely.

Always have a bucket of water and/or a fire extinguisher nearby. Know how to operate the fire extinguisher properly.

If a child is injured by fireworks, immediately go to a doctor or hospital. If an eye injury occurs, don’t allow your child to touch or rub it, as this may cause even more damage.

 

Parts of this article can be found at http://www.safekids.org/tip/fireworks-safety-tips

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