Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Fourth of July safety

When it comes to enjoying fireworks on Independence Day, know your city’s laws and keep safety top of mind for you and your family.

Firework injuries are commonly seen in the emergency room on July 4th, said Dr. Hoyt Frenzel, medical director of the emergency department at Texas Health Arlington Memorial Hospital. Never light, hold, then throw fireworks. Small fireworks might cause pain and burns, but larger devices can cause severe tissue damage. It is better to set the fireworks on the ground, light them, then run away. Or better yet, leave the firework displays to the professionals! Even sparklers should be used with caution.

“Sparklers are fun for kids, but they’re very hot and a common cause of eye injuries in children,” said Dr. Frenzel. “Never let young children run with a lit sparkler. Close parental supervision is important.”

More safety tips from the American Red Cross:

•    Never give fireworks to small children, and always follow the instructions on the packaging.
•    Keep a supply of water close by as a precaution.
•    Make sure the person lighting fireworks always wears eye protection.
•    Light only one firework at a time and never attempt to relight "a dud."
•    Store fireworks in a cool, dry place away from children and pets.
•    Never throw or point a firework toward people, animals, vehicles, structures or flammable materials.
•    Stay at least 500 feet away from professional fireworks displays.
•    Leave any area immediately where untrained amateurs are using fireworks.

Have a safe and happy Independence Day!

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