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What Are the Dangers of Fireworks?
Each year, fireworks cause about 1,300 structure fires, 300 vehicle fires and nearly 17,000 other fires resulting in thousands of injuries. The majority of firework related injuries occur during the end of June and the entire month of July. Injuries to children 5 and under most commonly occur with sparklers, which burn at a temperature of 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Injuries to children 5-14 are commonly caused by firecrackers and bottle rockets. It is important to remember that fireworks do not have to be large to have large risk.
If Injury Happens
If an injury occurs, you should seek immediate medical care. For eye injuries, do not touch or rub your eye as this can cause more damage. Don't flush the eye out with water or try to put any ointment on it either. Instead, cut out the bottom of a paper cup, place it around the eye, and get medical care right away.
How to Avoid Injury
- Light one firework at a time and then quickly move away
- Remember to wear eye protection
- Use fireworks outdoors and away from buildings or structures
- Never use fireworks if impaired by drugs or alcohol
- Always have a bucket of water and a hose nearby
- Dispose of fireworks by wetting them down and placing them in a metal garbage bin
- Never try to relight a firework that did not ignite fully
- Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks
- Don't bring pets to a firework display - if fireworks are being used near your home, put your pet in a safe, interior room to avoid exposure to the sound
Don't Forget: New York State Law
New York State Law mandates that sparkling Devices must be handheld or mounted on a base or spike and be limited in sizes that range from 1 to 500 grams of pyrotechnic composition. The Office of Fire Prevention and Control has been notified that the following counties have prohibited the sale and use of Sparkling Devices: Bronx, Kings, New York, Queens, Richmond, and Schenectady. Sales of Sparkling Devices by certified permanent and specialty retailers can only occur from June 1 to July 5 and December 26 to January 1. Sales of Sparkling Devices by certified temporary stands or tents can only occur from June 20 to July 5 and December 26 to January 1. All other types of consumer fireworks, including firecrackers, bottle rockets, roman candles, spinners and aerial devices, remain illegal statewide. Additionally, all consumer fireworks, including Sparkling Devices, remain fully prohibited in the City of New York.
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