Fireworks during the Fourth of July are as American as apple-pie, but did you know that two out of five fires reported on that day are started by fireworks, more than for any other cause? The good news is you can enjoy your holiday and the fireworks, with just a few simple safety tips:
Proceed with caution!
- Leave fireworks to the professionals. Do not use consumer fireworks.
- The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to attend a public display conducted by trained professionals.
- After the firework display, children should never pick up fireworks that may be left over, they may still be active.
Fireworks by the numbers
- From 2009-2013, U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 18,500 fires caused by fireworks. These fires included 1,300 structure fires, 300 vehicle fires and 16,900 outside and other fires. An estimated two people were killed in these fires.
- In 2014, U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 10,500 people for fireworks related injuries; 51% of those injuries were to the extremities and 38% were to the head. These injury estimates were obtained or derived from the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s 2014 Fireworks Annual Report by Yongling Tu and Demar Granados.
- The risk of fireworks injury is highest for young people ages 5-9, followed by children 10-19.
- More than one-quarter (28%) of fires started by fireworks in 2009-2013 were reported on July 4th. Almost half (47%) of the reported fires on the Fourth of July were started by fireworks.
Source: NFPA’s Fireworks report