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Fireworks Safety for the 4th of July

The birthday of our great nation is upon us as we celebrate another 4th of July across the country. There have been quite a few discussions and questions lately about fireworks since the state of New Jersey signed a new law last July. The new law makes some fireworks legal in the state, which means they can be purchased and then set off without fear of getting a ticket. Let's take a look at what is legal now and how you can remain safe around fireworks this 4th of July.

The new fireworks law, which went into effect last July 3, legalizes all ground-based fireworks that are considered sparklers and novelties. All aerial fireworks are still illegal in New Jersey. This means that you cannot purchase or set off any firecrackers, bottle rockets, reloadable shell devices, single tube devices and any other aerials. See the graphic below from the NJ Division of Fire Safety about which devices are legal and which ones are banned.

When it comes to fireworks safety it's always best to leave them to the professionals so you don't risk injuring yourself or someone else. If you decide to purchase fireworks make sure they are from a reputable dealer, such as a large nation-wide retailer and not a pop-up store or roadside dealer. You never know if the ones sold by smaller retailers are in good shape.

Make sure you keep a fire extinguisher or hose close to where you are setting off the fireworks in the event that the ground, a tree, a vehicle, a building or a person catches fire due to a spark. The hose should also be used to wet down the fireworks after they have been fired. Wetting down the used fireworks is important so that someone else doesn't pick them up and risk getting burned.

Never let your child handle or set off fireworks. Adults should be the only people setting off fireworks at your party. If you choose to use fireworks, be sure they are set off far enough away from all buildings and people. Give yourself plenty of room to safely set them off so no one is hit.

Should the firework fail to light on the first attempt DO NOT try to re-light it. This can cause the firework to explode right in front of you, which can lead to very serious injuries such as burns, the loss of fingers, and more.

Refrain from lighting more than one firework at a time. Concentrate on lighting one firework at a time so you can be as safe as possible during the holiday celebration.

Please heed these safety tips from the Hunter's Heroes Foundation so you can have a safe and Happy 4th of July with family and friends.

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