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The Fourth of July is a favorite holiday for many Americans because of the extravagant pyrotechnics that many communities display. Many people also choose to celebrate with their own personal fireworks, which are legal in all but three states. Each state has their own list of permitted consumer fireworks, but legal fireworks can cause injuries when not used correctly as well. According to the Amputee-Coalition, over 600 people will end up in emergency rooms on the Fourth of July due to fireworks-related injuries. If you plan to set off fireworks at home this July, make sure you carefully supervise any children and follow these tips to ensure your holiday is a safe one.
Buying your fireworks from a licensed dealer is the single most important factor in eliminating injuries. Homemade fireworks are illegal for a reason, as their composition is unknown, they meet no safety standards, and are unpredictable. Often, the people manufacturing them have no knowledge of pyrotechnics. The outside is coated with a dangerous explosive dust that can cause the firework to detonate from heat and friction.
Illegal explosives may be identified by some or all of the following characteristics:
Adhere to local laws regarding the use of fireworks and read all the instructions before igniting anything. Only use fireworks in the presence of responsible adult supervision. Fireworks should be lit one at a time. Be sure to move quickly away after ignition. Keep a safe distance from fireworks displays and choose a large, clear, and outdoor area for using fireworks. Refrain from using metal or glass containers.
Use safety glasses and have water nearby in case of emergencies, both in a bucket and by a hose connected to a water source. It is best to keep pets and other animals away from all noise.
Never point fireworks at people or hold sparklers close to your face, hair, or clothing. Fireworks that fail to ignite should be left for 20 minutes and then soaked in water before disposal. Spent fireworks should also be soaked before being disposed in a metal trash can that does not contain combustible materials. You should never mix alcohol, drugs, and fireworks.
Fireworks are the highlight of the most important American holiday, so be sure you celebrate safely. If you or someone you love is injured in an accident involving the negligence of another party, contact an experienced Wilmington personal injury lawyer from Rhoades & Morrow. We put our clients first and have been helping the citizens of Delaware with personal injury claims since 1990. Call 302-427-9500 to schedule a free initial consultation or contact us online.