Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – June 29, 2012 - It’s that exciting time of year when our nation comes together to celebrate Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, to commemorate the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776.
For many Americans, this date consists of annual picnics and get-togethers with family and friends, baseball games, pool parties and almost always, some type of fireworks display. Whether you plan to attend a local fireworks show or light up a few sparklers of your own, safety should always be your number one priority.
Your BBB, with information obtained from the National Council on Fireworks Safety, is providing the following tips to help ensure your Fourth of July remains free of any harm or unexpected trips to the hospital:
· Only use fireworks when you are outdoors and in an open area.
· Obey local laws. For instance, Pennsylvania State law prohibits the use of Consumer and Display Fireworks in the state without a permit.
· Always have water handy if you plan to ignite fireworks. A hose or even a bucket should suffice.
· Use fireworks only as they are intended to be used. Do not attempt to alter or combine them. Be sure to read all directions and the caution label before lighting.
· Never relight a "dud" firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water before placing it in an outdoor garbage can.
· Use common sense. Spectators should maintain a safe distance from the shooter and the shooter should wear safety glasses.
· Remember that alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Have a "designated shooter" set-up and light all fireworks.
· Only persons over the age of 12 should be allowed to handle fireworks of any kind. Parents and caretakers should even closely supervise teens if they are using fireworks.
· Do not ever use homemade fireworks or illegal explosives: They can cause serious harm to you and others, as well as property damage. Report illegal explosives to the fire or police departments in your community.
And note these special sparkler safety tips:
· Always remain standing while using sparklers.
· Never hold a child in your arms while using sparklers.
· Never hold or light more than one sparkler at a time.
· Never throw sparklers.
· Sparkler wires and sticks remain hot long after the flame has gone out. Be sure to drop spent sparklers in a bucket of water.
· Teach children not to wave sparklers or run while holding them.
For more tips and helpful consumer safety information, visit www.bbb.org. Your BBB would like to wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy Fourth of July holiday!
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