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Firework Safety Tips

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SPECIAL TO THE LARUE COUNTY HERALD NEWS

1.  Sorry Kids, Adults Only

Fireworks are great family fun and entertainment, but they do burn very hot and are intended to be handled only by adults

Never let children handle, play with or light any fireworks

2.  Follow the Laws: Use Common Sense

Follow your local and state laws regarding the possession and use of fireworks, and use good common sense at all times in handling fireworks

Read all directions, cautions, labels and warnings on each individual fireworks item to understand the product performance and hazards associated with the use of the item before you use it

3.  Use Fireworks on a Hard Surface

Always use fireworks on a hard, flat and level surface to insure the stability of the items.

This is particularly important when using the taller items that produce a thrust upon ignition.

Grass, gravel and sand surfaces are not suitable for any item intended to be used in an upright position

4.  Use in a Clear, Open Area Away from the Audience

Always keep the audience (particularly children) a safe distance from the launch or shooting site

Light the fireworks in a clear, open area away from buildings, vehicles overhead obstructions and shrubbery

A minimum clear distance of 35 feet for fountains and other ground-based items and 150 feet for aerial items is recommended

Avoid lighting your fireworks in any area where there is dry grass, dry brush or any flammable items that could catch fire

Never shoot fireworks in metal or glass containers; always use fireworks outdoors.

5.  Use Care When Lighting the Fireworks

Always light fireworks products with an extended butane lighting device

Light the fuse only on the tip

Position yourself as far from the product as possible and extend your arm out using the extended lighting device; this method of lighting will keep you as far as possible from the fireworks item

6.  One at a Time

Light only one firework item at a time

Certain products when ignited together, like sparklers, will have a tendency to flare up in an uncontrollable and dangerous manner

7.  Have a Ready Source of Water Close By

Have an accessible fire extinguisher, water supply, hose or bucket of water nearby for emergencies. A connected hose is best

During any fireworks shoot there should always be one individual whose sole job it is to be at the ready and be alert with a water source for emergencies

Having water on hand is especially important during dry conditions or when there is dried grass or brush in any close proximity to the shooting site

8.  Windy Conditions

Be cautious of lighting any fireworks during strong wind conditions

Light fireworks with the prevailing wind blowing away from the spectators

If there is a wind shift during the time you are lighting your fireworks, you should rearrange your shooting site to accommodate the wind shift or stop the shooting until the wind subsides

9.  Be Careful With Fireworks Not Being Used

It is important to use great care with fireworks not being used that are in the vicinity of your launch zone

Sparks from active fireworks can ignite idle fireworks and cause injury

Cover unused fireworks or put them in a sealed container to prevent sparks from active fireworks inadvertently igniting the idle ones

10.  Storage and Disposal of Fireworks

Store fireworks in a cool, dry place away and secure from children

Dispose of fireworks properly – dispose of them by thoroughly dousing them with water, then placing them in a sealed metal trash container keeping the trash container outdoors

Never store spent fireworks indoors