Celebrate the 4th of July safely - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Celebrate the 4th of July safely

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Fire experts want you to have a fantastic time celebrating the 4th of July Holiday. However, thousands of injuries are caused by mishandling fireworks every year. That's why they want you to take some steps to make sure you are using them properly.

The National Council on Fireworks Safety says you need to keep several things in mind when it comes to using fireworks. They say parents need to keep a close eye on teens if they are using fireworks. Also they say keep the young kids away from fireworks and don't let them handle them. It might sound obvious but they also say fireworks should only be used outside. Before you light a firework they say make sure you read the caution label before you light it. They say always have water and a fire extinguisher ready if you will be shooting fireworks. Also they say fireworks and alcohol don't mix so have a designated shooter. They also say you should wear safety glasses when lighting a firework. Also they say never try to relight a "dud" firework. They say wait 20 minutes and then soak the firework in a bucket of water. Fire experts will tell you make sure you soak spent fireworks in water before you put them in the garbage can. A partially lit firework can easily cause a fire. Finally they say you need to obey local laws so if fireworks are not legal where you live, don't shoot them off.

They might not look like much but experts say sparklers cause injuries every single year. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees-hot enough to melt some metals. Experts say first of all always stand when you are using a sparkler. Also never hold a child in your arms while using sparklers. Also never hold or light more than one sparkler at a time. Never throw sparklers. Also remember that a sparkler wire and stick will remain very hot long after the flame has gone out. So remember to drop spent sparklers in a bucket of water. Also only people 12 and up should be using sparklers of any type. 

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission says that 65 percent of all fireworks injuries in 2011 happened around the July 4th holiday. They say more than half of these injuries were the result of unexpected ignition of the device or consumers not using fireworks as intended. CPSC received reports of four consumers who were killed by either professional-grade or homemade firework devices, while an estimated 9,600 consumers were injured. This is why experts want you to be careful this holiday so you can enjoy the day with your family instead of in an emergency room.

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