It’s that time of year when our nation celebrates Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776.
For many, that means picnics, baseball, pool parties and almost always, some type of fireworks. Whether you will be attending a fireworks show, or having a not so private fireworks display at your home, safety should be your number one concern.
BBB, with information obtained from the National Council on Fireworks Safety, provides the following tips to ensure your July 4th remains free of any harm or hospital visits:
• Use fireworks outdoors only.
• Obey local laws. If fireworks are not legal where you live, do not use them.
• Always have water handy. (A hose or bucket).
• Only use fireworks as intended. Don't try to alter them or combine them.
• Never relight a "dud" firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
• Use common sense. Spectators should keep a safe distance from the shooter and the shooter should wear safety glasses.
• Alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Have a "designated shooter."
• Only persons over the age of 12 should be allowed to handle sparklers of any type.
• Do not ever use homemade fireworks of illegal explosives: They can kill you! Parents and caretakers should always closely supervise teens if they are using fireworks.
• Parents should not allow young children to handle or use fireworks.
• Know your fireworks. Read the caution label before igniting.
• Wear safety glasses whenever using fireworks.
• Soak spent fireworks with water before placing them in an outdoor garbage can.
• Report illegal explosives, like M-80s and quarter sticks, to the fire or police department
And note these special safety tips, if using sparklers:
• Always remain standing while using sparklers.
• Never hold a child in your arms while using sparklers.
• Never hold, or light, more than one sparkler at a time.
• Never throw sparklers.
• Sparkler wire and stick remain hot long after the flame has gone out. Be sure to drop spent sparklers in a bucket of water.
• Teach children not to wave sparklers, or run, while holding sparklers.
Have a safe and happy Fourth of July!
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Contact the BBB of Coastal Carolina by phone at (843)488-2227 or coastalcarolina.bbb.org.