LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 3, 2013) - Americans will celebrate our nation's independence by gathering with friends and family for food, fun and fireworks.
Each year, an estimated 7,000 people are treated in emergency departments across the United States for fireworks-related injuries. In 2010, 3,400 children under the age of 15 were injured by fireworks. Of these, more than 70 percent occurred in the weeks surrounding July 4th.
Safe Kids Fayette County, led by Kentucky Children's Hospital, offers these tips to help stay out of the emergency department during the upcoming holiday:
- Always have a bucket of water and/or a fire extinguisher nearby. After the fireworks are completed, soak them with plenty of water from your bucket or garden hose before throwing them away to prevent trash fires.
- Do not wear loose clothing while using fireworks.
- Stand several feet away from lit fireworks. If a devise does not go off, do not stand over it to investigate it. Put it out with water and dispose of it.
- Adults should always supervise fireworks activities. Never allow small children to play with fireworks. Sparklers burn at 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit. Never leave children unattended with fireworks.
- Choose Fireworks that are legal, labeled “consumer” fireworks. These will be brightly packaged and have warning labels and instructions. Illegal fireworks are often unpackaged, and wrapped in plain brown paper.
- Read all instructions to assure safe operation of your consumer fireworks.
- Use only outdoors, safely away from anything that can burn, at least 200 feet from buildings. Use on a flat surface such as concrete or pavement, if possible.
- Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not fully functioned. Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
- Never carry fireworks in your pocket and never shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
- Avoid any and all areas prone to fires, such as homes, dry grass, brush and trees.