Fireworks safety begins with the manufacturer of the firework and continues with you, the consumer. It’s always best to leave fireworks to professionals but for for those of us who enjoy setting off the explosive pyrotechnic devices it is important to follow the guidelines of usage for the firework ensuring safety and security.
Thousands of people are taken to the hospital in the United States every year due to injuries from fireworks. Many suffer injuries from from operating bottle rockets, firecrackers and sparklers. The most common injuries from fireworks include injuries to hands, neck, arms, legs, fingers, eyes, face and head. Many injuries are severe and can result in permanent problems such as loss of vision, hearing, fingers and limbs.
Here are some tips to remember when operating fireworks:
1. Try to purchase “ready-made” fireworks rather than making your own, even from a kit.
2. For minors, have adult supervision at all times and children should not operate fireworks at any time.
3. Purchase only legal fireworks that have a label with instructions for proper use. If the fireworks you have purchased do not have an instruction sheet, chances are they are illegal to use.
4. Follow all directions carefully in operating fireworks.
5. Light one firework at a time. Multiple fireworks lit increases the chances of a fire hazard.
6. Never point fireworks at people. If you’re lighting a firework, wear eye protection and don’t lean over the firework.
7. If a firework is not working properly or cannot be lit, discard that firework and try to light a new firework.
8. Have a bucket of water handy so that old and used fireworks can be discarded; this decreases the chances of a fire hazard.
9. Always store your fireworks in a cool and dry place.
10. If someone is injured during firework operation, seek medical attention immediately. If someone is injured in the eye area form a firework, do not attempt to rub the person’s eye or attempt to wash the eye. An immediate visit to the nearest emergency room can make the difference between saving a person’s eyesight and permanent blindness.
Watch the video below for additional safety tips when operating fireworks: