Firefighters urge safety when enjoying fireworks

Columbus firefighters know that a lot of people will be setting off fireworks over the next few days as part of their Independence Day celebrations.

Capt. Mike Wilson, spokesman for the fire department, offers some tips to keep your family and your property safe.

He suggests making sure that you have an extinguishing agent handy, whether a garden hose or a fire extinguisher, should a fire break out.

Wilson also suggested only having one person shoot off the fireworks, to avoid getting in each others way, to allow plenty of room for your fireworks display and to take care to supervise any children who are near fireworks. He said more than a third of fireworks injuries happen to children under the age of 15.

He also said that if you let children use fireworks and give them a lighter or matches to do so, to make sure to collect those igniters at the end of the evening.

Other fireworks safety tips from the firefighters include:

  • Always wear shoes in an area where fireworks are being used. Sparkler sticks can burn the skin after being discarded on the ground.
  • Wear eye and hearing protection when lighting fireworks.
  • Light only one firework at a time.
  • Don’t try to relight fireworks that don’t light initially.
  • Confirm rubbish or leaves are cleared from the area where fireworks will be used.
  • Don’t place your face or body over a mortar style firework.