Celebrate safely this Fourth of July
Celebrate this coming 4th of July by putting safety first. Here are some tips everyone should follow.
Over 100 fireworks-related injuries occurred last year in Kansas
Topeka, KS. – The Office of the State Fire Marshal with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and Safe Kids Kansas remind Kansans of the importance of safety around fireworks. Fireworks can be dangerous to both adults and children if not handled properly.
According to the Kansas Syndromic Surveillance Program, in 2016 there were 123 reported fireworks-related injuries. Injuries to hands were involved in 39 percent of incidents and 34 percent involved injuries to the eyes, face and head.
The most common victims of fireworks injuries are adult males and children. According to statistics from the Kansas Fireworks Injury Survey, a voluntary reporting system for Kansas hospitals, adult males represented 40 percent of all reported fireworks-related injuries, with another 40 percent of reported fireworks injuries affecting children under the age of 18.
“While shooting your own fireworks can be a thrill, they can also cause serious injuries and fires if not handled properly,” says Doug Jorgensen, Fire Marshal for the State of Kansas. “The safest approach to enjoying fireworks is to visit public fireworks displays conducted by trained professionals who know how to properly handle fireworks. We want all our Kansas kids to enjoy this summer’s festivities as safely as possible.”
To help the public celebrate safely, the Office of the State Fire Marshal and Safe Kids Kansas offers the following tips for the safe use of fireworks:
- Always purchase high quality fireworks from reliable and legitimate sources
- Always read and follow label directions
- Have an adult supervise all fireworks activities
- Always ignite fireworks outdoors
- Have water nearby
- Never experiment or attempt to make your own fireworks
- Light only one firework at a time
- Never re-ignite malfunctioning fireworks
- Never give fireworks to small children
- Store fireworks in a cool, dry place
- Dispose of fireworks properly
- Never throw fireworks at another person
- Never carry fireworks in your pocket
- Never shoot fireworks in metal or glass containers
In addition, bottle rockets and M80s are dangerous and illegal in the State of Kansas. The use or sale of these banned fireworks is considered a crime under Kansas law.
For more information on fireworks safety, visit FireMarshal.ks.gov/fireworkssafety or SafeKidsKansas.org.