June 30, 2010

Fireworks Safety

Nothing lights up a Canada Day celebration like fireworks. However, every year, fireworks used by amateurs cause many injuries serious enough to require emergency treatment. Severe injuries caused by fireworks include burns, lacerations, amputations, and blindness. Here are some safety tips if you plan to use fireworks:

  • Always read and follow label directions on all fireworks.

  • An adult should always be present to control the use of fireworks. If children (over the age of 12) are provided sparklers, make sure they keep them outside and away from the face, clothing, and hair. Sparklers can reach 1,800° Fahrenheit (982° Celsius) - hot enough to melt gold.

  • Purchase your fireworks from a reputable fireworks seller.

  • Always use fireworks outdoors, well away from buildings, vehicles, dry grass, trees, or other flammable objects.

  • Always have a bucket of water where fireworks are being used. A water hose or fire extinguisher are also an excellent precaution.

  • Do not experiment or make "home made" fireworks.

  • Do not take fireworks apart, attach objects to them, or attempt to alter the product in any way.

  • Light only one firework at a time.

  • Never try to re-light a "dud" or malfunctioning firework. Wait 15 to 20 minutes before handling the firework, then soak it in a bucket of water.

  • Dispose fireworks properly by soaking them in water before placing them in a trashcan.

  • Never throw or point fireworks at people, or pets

  • Never shoot fireworks from a metal or glass container.

  • The fireworks handler should always wear eye protection and never hold fireworks by hand, or place any part of the body over the fireworks after it is lit.

  • If storing unused fireworks is necessary, keep them in a cool, dry place. Store them in a closed box, away from any ignition source.

  • Pets may be frightened by loud noises and bright flashes. Keep pets indoors while enjoying your fireworks.

More safety tips

Canada Safety Council

Natural Resources Canada

The National Council for Fireworks Safety

Fireworks Safety

Leave the Pyrotechnics to the Pros

Canada Day at the Forks

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