Fireworks Safety Tips


Fireworks are the cause of serious burns, fires, and eye injuries, which is why many organizations such as National Fire Protection Association and the National Safety Council recommend people avoid consumer fireworks entirely and enjoy public displays of fireworks by the professionals. But if the purchase of legal consumer fireworks is offered where you live, below are helpful safety tips to keep you and your family, friends and pets safe:

• Know your local laws, not every state allows fireworks. Florida state law. Stay away from M-class fireworks, like M-80s or M-100s. These explosives are illegal and are dangerous and extremely unpredictable. If you see these you should report it to the fire or police department or call Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives toll-free hotline 1-888-283-2662. Consumer fireworks are ground devices containing less than 50 milligrams of explosive materials, or aerial devices containing less than 130 milligrams of explosives. Do not buy packaged fireworks in a brown paper, those are meant to be handled by trained professionals.

• Be mindful of weather conditions. If its incredibly windy postpone your fireworks until the next day. Sparks from strong winds can be pushed out of your safety perimeter and into neighboring houses, buildings, trees and grass, which can cause fires.

• Ignite fireworks in a large open area, away from cars and buildings to minimize contact with things that could catch fire.

• Wear safety glasses when shooting fireworks.

• When lighting the fuse of fireworks get moving as far away as you can. Don’t light fireworks in your hands.

• Do not drink alcohol. When drinking alcoholic beverages, you lose the ability to judge situations wisely and your reaction time slows down, also your coordination lessens. Sober is Safer.

• Something as small as a sparkler can cause significant burns. Sparklers can burn at about 2,000 degrees and just to distinguish the heat, glass melts at 900 degrees. This can cause a third-degree burn. Children can have a sever burn from dropping sparklers on their feet. Consider using alternatives, such as glow sticks, pinwheels or bubbles. Keep a close eye on children where people are lighting fireworks.

• Dispose of fireworks proper. Keep a bucket of water near by so you can douse all fireworks or sparklers. Never dispose of charred fireworks or sparklers in the trash, which can cause a fire from igniting and creating a safety issue. Its also a good idea to keep a fire extinguisher or hose nearby for extra safety.

Fireworks Safety Tips for Pets

Lots of pets suffer from some sort of anxiety or fear. All animals have very acute hearing and with loud bangs and whistles which can cause them a lot of stress and pain. With some planning ahead, you can ensure your pet will enjoy the holiday just as much as you do:

• Best option for pets is to keep them inside when fireworks are being ignited. Make sure they have somewhere to hide. You can put blankets or towels around their cage, crate or even a table so they can feel safe.

• Turn on radio with soothing music or tv, but not too loud. To help block out some of the noise.

• If you will be outside with your pet an anxiety vest may work. If you do not have one, a snuggly fitting tee shirt can also help.

• Keep your pet on a leash when outside and make sure they are micro chipped. The fireworks my startle them and run to find shelter.

• You can prepare your pet by playing fireworks noises softly, while giving them treats. Gradually increase the volume as they become more comfortable.

• Exercise your dog earlier in the day so that they are tired and relaxed in the evening.

Additional Resources

Leave Fireworks to the Experts

Fireworks and Your Pet: Tips for Staying Safe