Blog Post #375:  Be careful this July 4th

Blog Post #375:  Be careful this July 4th

Taken from: https://www.nfpa.org/Public-Education/By-topic/Seasonal-fires/Fireworks

I’m writing this on July 3rd.  Tomorrow is the big American Holiday – Independence Day – The Fourth of July!!  It is summer, it will be hot (or hotter) in most parts of the United States. Communities and organizations will shoot off fireworks.  And … people will also shoot off fireworks.

(Aside – joke- Q:  Does Canada have the fourth of July?  A: No. Their calendars go from the third to the fifth!!)

In Central Texas shooting off most fireworks in cities and towns is illegal.  Small items like snakes / glowworms; smoke ‘bombs’; wire sparkler and trick noisemakers are listed as accepted on my city’s website: https://www.leandertx.gov/fire/page/fireworks-leander

But, outside the city limits there are numerous places that sell fireworks (limited season in Texas and some other states); and they are legal to shoot off outside of city boundaries.

The article / website says:

  • Fireworks start an average of 18,500 fires per year, including 1,300 structure fires, 300 vehicle fires, and 16,900 outside and other fires. These fires caused an average of three deaths, 40 civilian injuries, and an average of $43 million in direct property damage.  
  • In 2017, U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 12,900 people for fireworks related injuries; 54% of those injuries were to the extremities and 36% were to the head. Children younger than 15 years of age accounted for more than one-third (36%) of the estimated 2017 injuries. These injury estimates were obtained or derived from the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s 2015 Fireworks Annual Report by Yongling Tu.

Growing up, we had sparklers and went someplace to see fireworks. The local baseball team had fireworks after their evening baseball game.  Later in the summer when the area regional fair was held, there were fireworks at that location. (I remember parking and watching the fireworks when the wind took the ashes away and on to our car).  But even then, this wasn’t perfect. Also from the National Fire Prevention Association is the information that wire sparklers can reach 1,200 degrees!! (That is HOT).

 

So, be safe this Independence Day – remember how our country got started but follow the rules and regulations for your area – and enjoy this All-American Holiday!!

Posted by Bruce White

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