Posted on June 29th, 2015 by Zane Cagle
Sparklers, the smaller firework often given to children accounts for 31 percent of the firework related injuries of children 14 and younger each year.
As our country prepares to celebrate the Fourth of July weekend, the Division of Fire Safety reminds Missourians that public fireworks displays orchestrated by trained professionals offer the most spectacular sights and are the safest for everyone. The Fourth of July is probably one of my favorite holidays as it involves great food, friends, swimming and celebrating the many freedoms we enjoy in the U.S. However, it is also a time for increased motor vehicle accidents and burn injuries.
Independence Day is the biggest day for fireworks of the year in the U.S and it is also the day when the largest number of fires and injuries caused by fireworks occur.
“Fireworks safety should be one of the top considerations for all Missourians as we gather to celebrate the July 4th holiday,” said Acting State Faire Marshal Greg Carrell. “I encourage families to take advantage of the many thrilling public fireworks shows around the state. People who chose to use consumer fireworks should be aware of the risk of injury-particularly to children–and the potential fire hazards, and take the necessary precautions”
In 2013, a U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission study of fireworks injuries during the month around July 4 (June 21-July 21) revealed startling facts about fireworks injuries across the nation.
- On average, 240 people go to the emergency room with fireworks-related injuries in the month around July 4th
- About 40 percent of fireworks injuries are to children 14 and younger
- Smaller fireworks led the most injuries of any category’s of fireworks: sparklers 31 percent; firecrackers 11 percent.
If you are going to be buying fireworks this season, consider the following safety tips:
- Buy from a licensed retailer. The Division of Fire Safety licensed seasonal retailers in Missouri from June 21 to July 10.
- Missourians who choose to use consumer fireworks should be aware of local ordinances related to fireworks – some neighborhoods ban fireworks. As well, some cities have ordinances against using consumer fireworks within the city limit.
- ALWAYS KEEP SMALL CHILDREN AWAY FROM FIREWORKS. If teens are allowed to handle fireworks, they should be closely supervised by an adult
- Light only one firework at a time; never try to re-light fireworks that have malfunctioned
- Make sure to have a garden hose or a bucket of water nearby in case of fire
- Dispose of fireworks by soaking them in water and leaving them in a trash can
- Only use fireworks in a large open space that has been cleared of any flammable materials. Never light fireworks indoors and never shoot them off in a glass container
- Don’t use fireworks while consuming alcohol
- Always wear eye protection and use earplugs if you have sensitive ears
- Never had any part of your body over fireworks
- Never throw or point fireworks at other people
- Store fireworks in a cool, dry place. Do not save fireworks from season to season
- Make sure fireworks are legal in your locality before buying them
Make Fourth of July a Safe Holiday
While Independence Day is meant to be a day of celebration and joy, the interruption by a child’s injury can quickly turn an idyllic weekend into a nightmare. If you are going to be using consumer fireworks— exercise great care. Even though your five year old wants to shoot off fireworks by themselves–it’s not a good idea.
Burns to the child’s hands, face, chest and arms are the least of these injuries. As children are smaller and of course, not as leery because again, THEY ARE CHILDREN, they are more easily injured.
As the adult and or parent, closely supervise any children and fireworks. Better yet, grab a blanket and some snacks and head to your community fireworks show where you can let the professional put on the show. Also, professional shows are far more spectacular and you can enjoy them with all of your friends and family!
Fourth of July and Alcohol
Sprits are generally a part of many summer celebrations. Be certain if your group is consuming alcohol that there is a Sober person supervising the children with fireworks. As well, as in all celebrations, be certain there is a Sober driver taking people to and from the parties.
Whether you are on the water, traveling to a neighborhood fireworks show or involved in lake activities involving a boat of personal water craft. Summer festivities are meant to be fun. Accidents during your holiday usually bring fun to an abrupt halt including burn injuries, motor vehicle accident or boating accidents.
If you have been involved in a car accident or have experienced a burn injury caused by another, be sure to seek immediate medical treatment and call an experienced car accident attorney. No matter the injury or circumstance, you should consult an attorney if you have been injured.
Our attorneys are available seven days a week for free consultations at 314-276-1681 or toll free 800-685-3302