Keeping You Safe: Practice good fireworks safety for Fourth of July

Tips for a safe July 4th weekend
Published: Jun. 30, 2021 at 11:37 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - This week’s Keeping You Safe looks at fireworks safety tips to prevent you from going to the hospital.

The Fourth of July is a time to celebrate but it’s also a time when emergency rooms see more than 10,000 people a year due to fireworks injuries.

“Generally, they occur to the hands and the fingers of our patients, but we do also see burns to the eyes and the face, as well as the trunk and even the legs,” Chrissie Cattla, injury prevention and outreach coordinator for Grand Strand Health, said.

Cattla stressed that prevention is key when it comes to fireworks safety and said you should always read the instructions first.

“We recommend that people stand a good distance away from the fireworks after lighting them. Never walk up to a dud and try to relight it or pick it up,” Cattla said.

Here are more safety tips to consider:

- Never point or throw fireworks at another person

- Keep a hose or bucket of water nearby

- Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers

- Wear protective eyeglasses and gloves to reduce the risk of burns

- Don’t drink alcohol while setting off fireworks

- Before throwing away your used fireworks, completely soak them in water

“We also recommend that children do not touch fireworks or ignite them,” Cattla said.

She added that children shouldn’t use sparklers because they can reach up to 1,200 degrees and recommended they use glowsticks instead. If you do get burned, call 911 immediately.

“They need to come to the hospital and let us evaluate it. Don’t try to put anything on it. Just come to us, let us evaluate it and then we will get them the appropriate treatment,” Cattla said.

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