SYLACAUGA, Ala. – Fireworks are an All-American pastime, enjoyed by millions annually. Created by China in the 7th century, fireworks have been around for more than a millennium. Unfortunately, fireworks can be hazardous if not handled properly.

With the upcoming holiday, Independence Day, many more fireworks are in use. Many firework retailers pop up all over town, selling these fireworks to anyone.

“ People should be at least sixteen years old to buy and use fireworks,” said Adam Gardner, the Interim Fire Chief of the Sylacauga Fire Department. “People should also have enough common sense to shoot fireworks.”

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), there is an average of 18,500 fires started by fireworks each year. These fires also caused an average of three deaths, 40 injuries, and 43 million dollars in property damage. “A lot of fires caused by fireworks are because of the weather,” added Gardner. If the weather has been dry, there is a higher risk of starting a fire. However, with all the rain that Sylacauga has seen recently, there is a lower chance of starting a fire.

Most of these incidents could have been prevented, if only people took more safety measures when using fireworks. Listed below is a series of tips to ensure your safety over the holiday.

  • Obey local laws regarding the usage of fireworks.
  • Never give fireworks to unsupervised children.
  • Alcohol and fireworks should never be paired.
  • Do not bring pets to a fireworks display. The bright lights and sounds could startle your pet, as well as harm its hearing.
  • Always use fireworks outdoors, away from buildings and vehicles.
  • Read all cautionary labels and descriptions before lighting any fireworks.

In the end, fireworks are a beautiful icon of American tradition and celebration. Hopefully, everyone will follow safety measures and stay safe over the Independence Day holiday.

Max Cleveland for SylacaugaNews.com | © 2017, SylacaugaNews.com/Marble City Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.

###

© 2017, SylacaugaNews.com/Marble City Media LLC. All Rights Reserved. RadioAlabama’s network (Yea!106.5, WYEA!1290, 98.3 Fox FM, 105.1 WRFS, 96.3 & 1050 WLMA) along with SylacaugaNews.com reports local news around the clock and will keep you up-to-date during breaking news and weather. For real-time alerts from SylacaugaNews.com, text “news” to 59925. Standard text message rates may apply. Click here to e-mail the reporter.