Firework Safety

By: Rebecca Burlette
By: Rebecca Burlette

Smoke bombs, sparklers and morning glories, they may be legal but they're still dangerous. They’ve been known to cause burns, eye injuries and even fires. You might be surprised to hear that sparklers are one of the most dangerous fireworks in Illinois.

Frank Schmitt of the Rockford Fire Department says, "Sparklers burn at 1300 degrees so there’s a high risk with those."

Children often don’t realize how hot the stick stays after it’s finished burning and they’re often discarded on the ground where children can step on them. If you don't pick up all used sparklers they can become projectiles when you mow your lawn. Even fireworks that don't go off can cause injuries. It's important to take extra precaution around duds.

As soon as you see a dud, wait a couple of minutes and have an adult check it out. If you aren't sure what’s legal in Illinois keep this in mind, legal fireworks won't fly up, and if you plan on crossing the state border to buy illegal ones take this into consideration, Schmitt says Wisconsin residents aren’t even allowed to purchase fireworks there so the sole purpose of those stands is to sell illegal fireworks. Using illegal firecrackers not only puts you at risk but your friends, neighbors and local firefighters as well.

Make sure to also keep kids in mind this Independence Day. They often like to imitate adults and during this time of year matches and lighters are sometimes left lying around. If you're setting off fireworks near homes make sure to stay 20 feet back and light them on concrete.

Another safety tip to remember when lighting fireworks is to keep a bucket of water nearby. All used fireworks should be placed in the water.


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