Karen McPhail, RN, MSN
Summer is a time often filled with pool parties, family get togethers, vacationing, and of course fireworks! For many families the 4th of July fireworks are a family tradition that they enjoy together year after year!
No matter how you celebrate, be sure to take a quick look at the tips below to ensure a fun and safe holiday:
Always purchase from reputable, legal vendors! Never attempt to make fireworks! Believe it or not people do!
Carefully read and follow all instructions on fireworks labels before using.
Consider the needs of older adults and small children throughout. Ensure that there is a safe place to go away from the noise and excitement in case anxiety or fear is noted. Some individuals enjoy the excitement, while others can become very overwhelmed by the sound and light the display. Many individuals with cognitive impairments are upset by loud noises.
Adults who have consumed alcohol, children and older adults with mobility challenges or cognitive impairment should not ignite fireworks. Holding a sparkler can even be a hazard for those with impairments.
Keep pets indoors to prevent injury while fireworks are being ignited.
Wear protective eye wear when lighting fireworks!
Prevent fire hazards! Use fireworks in open areas only. Avoid areas with high grass, extensive tree cover, dry ground cover, or closed in structures.
If a firework does not light properly or go off as planned do not attempt to re light it. Stay away from it for at least 15 minutes, and then fully soak down with a hose.
It is important to have on hand a fire extinguisher, a turned on and usable hose and / or a bucket of water when lighting fireworks.
Keep children at a distance and do not let them run around or near fireworks. Keep an eye on children throughout. Sometimes everyone is caught up in the festivities and children can accidentally move quickly into an unsafe area. In addition, children can be taken off guard by the noise and perhaps fall, run into something, or get injured.
After fireworks have been used, put them in a bucket or metal container, soak them down, and leave them in a safe area for 24 hours. This means away from trees, dry or high grasses, the inside of a garage, shed, or building, or near combustible items.
Be informed by knowing the local laws relating to fireworks in your area! These laws are important and should be followed for the safety of all!
For injuries- Call 911 immediately, and until medical attention comes:
- Remove any clothing touching the burn, unless it is stuck to the affected skin.
- Run the burned area under cold water until it has cooled, for around 10-15 minutes.
- Cover the burn in a moist, sterile, dressing to prevent infection.
Always seek prompt medical attention or injuries and burns!!
Have a wonderful and festive holiday!!!