Pharos-Tribune

Opinion

July 3, 2014

OUR VIEW: Fireworks not to be trifled with

There are 200 injuries daily because of the use of fireworks in the month of July, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Every day. Two hundred injuries. That’s 6,000 injuries in one month.

We can almost hear you saying, “Oh, but that’s only because of the crazy people who make their own fireworks and buy the big, outlandish fireworks.”

To that we say, there were an estimated 600 emergency room visits associated with sparklers and 400 with bottle rockets.

And, might we add, another 400 of those visits were from small firecrackers.

Yes, that leaves a large number for the those playing with and making illegal fireworks, but no one is immune from the dangers of fireworks — big or small, legal or illegal.

So, if you’re going to be purchasing and using fireworks, please be safe because your health is of utmost importance.

Here’s how to play with fireworks safely:

• Never let children handle, play with, or light any fireworks.

• Store fireworks in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.

• Always purchase your fireworks from reliable, licensed fireworks dealers.

• Use a clear, open area. Keep audience a safe distance away from the shooting site.

• Safety glasses are recommended for those individuals lighting fireworks or those in close proximity to the fireworks.

• Do not alter any fireworks device or make your own fireworks.

• Only light one firework item at a time.

• Never attempt to re-light, alter, or fix any “dud” firework item.

• Have a fire extinguisher, water supply, hose, or bucket of water nearby.

• Never smoke when handling fireworks.

And secondly, be careful because there are laws surrounding the use of fireworks.

Here’s some of the laws you should be aware of, according to the Indiana State Police:

• Only individuals over the age of 18 may purchase fireworks.

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