The safety of using fireworks has been the subject of debates over the years. Annually, more than hundreds are injured because of fireworks, with some victims needing to have parts of their body amputated due to the power of the blast. More than 3,000 children under the age of 15 are sent to the emergency room each year in the United States because of fireworks. Sparklers, which are typically viewed by parents as relatively harmless fireworks for children, account for one-third of the injuries to children under five.
But injuries aren’t the only concern when it comes to handling fireworks. Since fireworks are composed of highly-flammable materials, there is also the risk of them causing fire.
It is especially the case when they are poorly stored just like what happened in the Philippines in December 2007 when several stores selling fireworks were burned down because a firework was accidentally lit.
Because of these, several countries regulate the use of fireworks in their territory. In the United States for example, the use of fireworks is allowed although it is up to each state on how they will regulate the use of them. If you plan to use fireworks, make sure they are legal in your area.
The National Council on Fireworks Safety is a US-based organization that aims to promote fireworks safety. Below is a list of their advice in handling fireworks.
– Fireworks should not be lit indoors especially sparklers.
Doing this is potentially hazardous to people and may cause fire when thrown into flammable materials or surfaces.
The best way to protect your family is to not use any fireworks at home. Instead, attend public fireworks displays and leave the lighting to the professionals.
– Only persons who are over 12 are to be allowed in handling sparklers since these fireworks can cause injury if handled incorrectly. Closely supervise children around fireworks at all times.
– Little arms are too short to hold sparklers, which can heat up to 1,200 degrees. How about this? Let your young children use glow sticks instead. They can be just as fun but they don’t burn at a temperature hot enough to melt glass.
– Always have a bucket of water and/or a fire extinguisher nearby. Know how to operate the fire extinguisher properly.
– People shouldn’t mix drinking alcohol and lighting fireworks. Drinking alcohol slows down a person’s reaction time and could be dangerous when handling fireworks.
– Finally, people are told to use their common sense. A little bit of caution is also encouraged.
Have we sparked your interest? Here are a few more tips on how to stay safe around fireworks. – See more at: http://www.safekids.org/tip/fireworks-safety-tips