Even though Independence Day is over, the risk of fireworks remains. Many homes have left over fireworks and many stores continue to sell fireworks after the 4th of July. In fact, many retailers are now discounting their fireworks, making them possibly more attractive to teens and children. Fireworks can cause serious burn injuries, eye injuries, head injuries, and other injuries. Prevent a firework accident with these tips:
1) Get rid of fireworks safely and responsibly or store them correctly until next year. If you have left over fireworks, call your local waste management authority to find out how to dispose of the fireworks responsibly. In most areas, you cannot simply place fireworks in your garbage because they are dangerous. Some communities have special fireworks pick-ups or drop-offs. If you decide to keep your fireworks, keep them in a cool, dry area where they won’t come into contact with heat. Keep them securely stored where children will not have access to them.
2) Talk to your children about the risks of fireworks. Some children may genuinely not understand how dangerous fireworks are. Discuss the possible injuries and risks of fireworks so that you children can understand the consequences of these products.
3) Make sure your children are not buying or setting off fireworks. Do not permit your children to operate or play with fireworks by themselves. Be clear and consistent about the privileges they will lose if they participate in such a dangerous activity.
4) Work with a local group to ensure that minors and children cannot buy fireworks. In most areas, retailers cannot sell fireworks to children and minors. Check your local laws. If such laws are in place, make sure that they are enforced. If such laws are not in place, consider writing to a local political representative to have these laws created.
Fireworks, when used responsibly, light up the summer night sky and delight us. Each year, however, many children lose an eye or sustain a serious injury due to improper use of fireworks. Taking a few precautions can help prevent such a tragedy.