Independence Day is an excellent opportunity to spend quality time with family, enjoy delicious food, and celebrate the independence of our great nation with a neighborhood fireworks display. With the Fourth of July just around the corner, now is an excellent time to review some safety tips. This article will help you ensure that your Independence Day celebration is memorable for all the right reasons. Let’s dive in.
Fireworks Safety Tips
According to an article by the New York Times, in the month around Independence Day, an average of 230 people per day end up in emergency rooms across the U.S. with fireworks-related injuries. The good news is there are precautions you can take to protect yourself and your family members from fireworks-related injuries. Here are some suggestions.
- Do not disassemble pre-assembled fireworks, attempt to make your own fireworks, or combine fireworks products.
- Make sure your fireworks are stored correctly and according to the packaged instructions.
- Only light fireworks on flat ground, away from flammable materials, and only in a dry and fire-resistant area.
- Do not light multiple fireworks at the same time.
- Do not point fireworks at yourself or others while you light them.
- Ensure the person lighting the fireworks is equipped with safety glasses and is sober. Keep all spectators at a safe distance from fireworks that are being lit.
- Do not allow young children to handle or light fireworks. Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities.
- Keep a fire extinguisher nearby, along with a hose or bucket in case of a fire or malfunction.
- If a firework malfunctions, do not relight it. Instead, soak it in water and dispose of it.
Grilling Safety Tips
Grilling goes hand-in-hand with any Independence Day celebration. That being said, the most common insurance claim on the Fourth of July is from cooking fires. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, more fires are reported on Independence Day than any other day of the year. Here are some tips to keep your home and family members safe while grilling out this holiday.
- Keep a three-foot safe zone around your grill. This means keeping your grill at least three feet away from your deck, home, landscaping, or outdoor equipment that could catch fire quickly.
- If you have a gas grill, check the grill hose for cracks, holes, and leaks before using it.
- Never grill indoors, in the garage, or in an enclosed area.
- Keep children and pets away from your grill.
- Avoid loose clothing that can catch fire while cooking.
- Open your gas grill before you light it.
- Remove grease and fat build-up on a regular basis so it cannot be ignited.
- Be sure to check out the National Fire Protection Association for additional fire safety tips.
Pool Safety Tips
Due to the typically warm weather, water sports are a very popular pastime on Independence Day; however, water sports have been linked to numerous deaths and injuries each year. The below tips will help you stay safe and keep your loved ones safe while enjoying water activities.
- Monitor young children closely. Never assume someone else is watching the children.
- Do not allow children to enter the water without proper flotation devices.
- Set water safety rules for your family.
- Keep a first aid kit near your pool deck.
- Never swim alone.
- Swim sober. Research has shown that alcohol consumption increases the risk of accidental drowning.
- Apply sunscreen frequently to avoid painful sunburn, sunstroke, or heatstroke.
- Remember to drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration.
Additional Safety Tips
Here are some additional tips to help you experience a fun, safe, and memorable Independence Day.
- Don’t skip out on applying insect repellent.
- Check you and your family members’ prescriptions to make sure you will not experience a sun-sensitizing drug reaction.
- Cover your food and beverages while outdoors to prevent bees and wasps from accidentally being swallowed.
- Use alcohol responsibly. Check out MADD for some amazing drunk driving prevention tips.
- Report any illegal explosives to your local police department.
- Use good judgement when boating and always look up water and weather conditions before leaving the house.
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