Fireworks are fun and an essential part of our Independence Day celebrations, but they can also be dangerous if not handled properly. Follow these guidelines to ensure a safe and enjoyable fireworks experience.
Only buy fireworks from reputable licensed sellers, like Snap Crackle and Boom: Purchasing fireworks from licensed sellers ensures the fireworks meet safety standards and are legal and consumer grade. Never experiment or attempt to make your own fireworks.
Read and follow the instructions carefully: Every firework has its own unique instructions that must be followed for safe use.
Keep a safe distance: Always keep a safe distance from the fireworks when they are being lit. A good rule of thumb is to stay at least 20-30 feet away from small fireworks like sparklers, fountains, and firecrackers and at least 100-200 feet away from larger fireworks, such as rockets, mortars, and multi-shot cakes.
Wear protective gear: Safety goggles and earplugs can protect your eyes and ears from the loud noise and debris associated with fireworks. Small children should use over-the-ear noise protection to ensure proper protection.
Don't mix alcohol and fireworks. This should be common sense, but we all know how that goes. Alcohol impairs judgment and slows reaction time, which can be dangerous when handling fireworks.
Keep fireworks away from small children: Fireworks can be extremely dangerous in the hands of children so, supervise them closely, especially with sparklers. We like to grab a solo cup, turn it upside down and poke the sparkler through the cup to prevent burns to the hand. Be sure they extend their arm away from their body while holding the sparkler.
Only light fireworks outdoors and away from buildings. Lay them on a flat, level, hard and fireproof surface that is free of debris. Be sure to brace your fireworks with bricks, blocks, or other materials that will prevent them from potentially tipping over. Also, never place any part of your body directly over a firework.
Never carry a firework in your pockets or shoot fireworks from a metal or glass container and do not aim or throw fireworks at or near another person or animal. Be considerate of others, especially animals and veterans.
In case of an emergency, keep a bucket of water nearby to douse any errant sparks or fires. It also may be wise to keep a fire extinguisher near as well. When finished, allow used fireworks to sit for at least 15-20 minutes, submerge them in water, drain, and then dispose of the trash in a metal container.
Light fireworks with the wind to the back of the audience. If it becomes too windy or the wind shifts directions, you should stop shooting fireworks and re-evaluate the situation.
Never relight malfunctioning fireworks. If a firework fails to light or explodes improperly, do not attempt to relight it. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in water before disposing of it. Don’t forget to clean up your mess.
Fireworks should be stored in a dry place and away from children. Do not store fireworks from year to year.