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Unfortunately, many people do not realize just how dangerous fireworks and sparklers can be—which is a primary reason that injuries occur. Fireworks can not only injure the users, but can also affect bystanders.

Bottle rockets and firecrackers can fly in any direction and may explode on or near someone instead of up in the air. Sparklers are also a huge risk, as they burn at very high temperatures and are often given to children too young to use them safely. All fireworks pose potential risks of burn, blindness and other injury.

Firework Safety Tips (1)

Tips for Safely Using Fireworks and Sparklers

Firework Precautions
  • Be cautious of lighting any fireworks during strong wind conditions.
    • Fireworks should be lit with the prevailing wind blowing away from the spectators.
    • If there is a significant wind shift during the time you are lighting the fireworks, rearrange the shooting site to accommodate the wind shift or stop shooting until the windy conditions subside.
  • Keep your distance from other people who are using sparklers or lighting their own fireworks.
    • Bystanders are more frequently injured by fireworks than the people who are using them!
  • Only responsible adults should handle fireworks.
  • NEVER carry fireworks in your pocket.
  • Safety glasses are recommended for those individuals lighting the fireworks and those individuals in close proximity to the fireworks.
  • Have an accessible fire extinguisher, water supply, hose, or bucket of water nearby for emergencies.
    • During any fireworks shoot, there should always be one individual assigned as the fireman, whose sole job is to be alert and at the ready with a water source.
General Safety
  • Use sparklers and fireworks outdoors only.
  • Use fireworks on a hard surface. Always light fireworks on a hard, flat, and level surface to insure the stability of the items.
    • Grass is generally not suitable for any item intended to be used in an upright position.
    • If lighting fireworks on grass, lay down a flat wooden board for a shooting surface.
  • NEVER attempt to make your own fireworks. And NEVER re-light a “dud” firework
    • Wait 15 to 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
  • NEVER shoot fireworks in or from metal or glass containers.
  • NEVER throw or point fireworks at other people.
  • If an injury occurs, stay calm. If your clothing catches on fire, lie on the ground, cover your face with your hands, and roll.
  • If you get something in your eye from a fireworks explosion, don’t rub or rinse your eye. Have someone take you to the emergency room immediately!
  • NEVER hold a child in your arms when lighting fireworks including sparklers.
  • Soak all fireworks in a bucket of water before throwing them in the trash can.
Pet Safety
  • The noise and lights of fireworks often frighten some animals, so it is very important that you are careful with pets and farm animals.
    • You may want to consider moving the animals away or keeping them inside during your display.