Fireworks are amazing fun, especially when celebrating holiday events such as the Fourth of July and New Year’s Eve. Giant concussive explosions with glittering, colorful displays often light-up the nighttime holiday skies in city-centers, public parks, and at beaches across the country. Firework shows can be impressive and fulfilling sights.

But it doesn’t take much to cause an accident – even with store-bought items in your own backyard.

Backyard fireworks, the kind that can be purchased at supermarkets and drug stores, can be very dangerous. Every year stories of tragic accidents filter into the news.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some safety tips that will help you keep your next fireworks experience a happy, safe one:

1. Obey all local laws regarding fireworks. Forty-nine out of fifty states allow legal “consumer” fireworks, but the definition of consumer fireworks varies from state to state. Make sure yours are legal. The best way to know is to buy them at a licensed store, stand or tent. Homemade or jerry-rigged fireworks can be unpredictable and extremely dangerous.

2. Abstain from alcohol and drugs. Even when celebrating, someone has to be sober enough to responsibly take charge of fireworks. Let them. Always have a sober adult in charge.

3. Read and follow the directions. Following instructions can feel tedious, but it’s too important not to with fireworks. Directions usually warn against:
Carrying them in your pocket
Shooting them from a glass or metal container
Aiming or throwing them at another person
Placing any part of your body over a firework
Giving them to children

4. Find the right place. Only use fireworks outside and away from buildings. If possible, place them on a flat, hard, level and fireproof surface – like a slab of concrete in a field – that is free from debris. Have a working garden hose or bucket of water handy to pour on an expended firework to make sure it is out.

5. Keep it cool. Once the initial thrill has been had, a danger is in upping the ante. It is not safe to twist the wicks of various fireworks together and light them for greater affect. Light only one firework at a time and never reignite one if it doesn’t light the first time.

Be safe out there in our community as you celebrate this Fourth of July. Remember, we are your Tallahassee law firm here to support you. Do not wait to contact us with your questions today!