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Independence Day Safety

Fourth of July fireworks can turn a fun-filled celebration into a painful memory if you do not exercise caution. Even the most innocent-looking fireworks can cause injury or a fire. For example, a sparkler can reach 1,800° F, a temperature hot enough to melt gold. Keep reading to learn firework tips and facts to help keep your Independence Day celebration safe and legal.

Firework Facts

  • In the state of Arizona, residents are only allowed to purchase “novelty fireworks” such as snakes, party poppers, ground spinners and fountains. Sparklers are not considered a novelty firework.
  • The following states only allow consumers to purchase sparklers and novelty fireworks: Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Ohio and Vermont.
  • The following states ban all types of consumer fireworks: Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York.
  • The states not previously mentioned allow the use of Class C consumer fireworks, as permitted by law, which may include rockets, Roman candles, mortars, tube devices, sparklers, rockets, snakes, fountains, party poppers and firecrackers containing no more than 50 milligrams of powder.

Read more about firework laws.

Firework Safety Tips

  • Learn and follow your local laws.
  • Wear safety goggles when handling fireworks.
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby when lighting fireworks. Soak fireworks that you lit or those that are duds.
  • Do not light fireworks in a container, especially those made of glass or metal.
  • Follow the packaging instructions for firework storage. Otherwise, store them in a cool, dry place.
  • Always require adult supervision when children are around fireworks.
  • Do not hold fireworks in your hand as you ignite them.
  • Do not try to relight fireworks that malfunction.
  • Ignite fireworks a safe distance from your home.
  • Make sure your pets are in a safe place before lighting fireworks because the noise can scare them.

Remember this Independence Day: playing it safe with fireworks is more fun than being in the emergency room because of a preventable injury or seeing your house go up in flames.

Learn how to prepare the outside of your home to prevent fire damage.

[Image: Allan Chatto]

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