How to safely celebrate Fourth of July with fireworks

Published: Jun. 30, 2022 at 8:41 AM MST
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(CNN) - The Fourth of July holiday begins this weekend, and many families are planning big celebrations.

Fireworks are always exciting on this holiday, but while the majestic explosions are captivating to watch, it is important to remember they come with a risk.

“Respect them. They’re explosives. They’re dangerous,” said Alex Hoehn-Saric, chair of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Hoehn-Saric says the Fourth of July holiday is one of the most dangerous times of the year. Last year, there were around 11,500 emergency room visits from fireworks-related injuries.

The injuries are everything from burns to concussions. Some injuries result in death.

“We really see most of our injuries around this time,” he said.

It’s not just fireworks that can cause injuries. Sparklers can be just as dangerous.

“Sparklers burn at 2,000 degrees, so it’s like having a blowtorch in your hand,” Hoehn-Saric said.

If you are going to set off your own fireworks, officials recommend the following tips:

  • Make sure it is legal to set them off in your area.
  • Light only one firework at a time.
  • Keep them away from any body parts and from other people.
  • Do not try to re-light a faulty firework.
  • Keep water handy to put out any flames.
  • Don’t ever handle fireworks while impaired.
  • Always monitor your children, and never let them handle fireworks.
  • If you do happen to get a serious burn, seek medical attention immediately.

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