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Independence Day Safety
According to the Illinois Society for the Prevention of Blindness one of every three fireworks injuries is to the eyes, and one of every four fireworks eye injuries mean some kind of permanent blindness. Fireworks not only damage eyes but hands, fingers, faces, ears and bodies. No one is safe.
Every year in Illinois, babies, boys and girls, teens, and men and women in their 20's through 80's are burned or hurt by fireworks. It is strongly recommended leaving fireworks to the professionals. But, if fireworks are legal where you live and you decide to set them off on your own, be sure to consider these important safety tips:
- Never allow children to play with or ignite fireworks.
- Read and follow all warnings and instructions.
- Be sure other people are out of range before lighting fireworks.
- Only light fireworks on a smooth, flat surface away from the house, dry leaves, and flammable materials.
- Never try to relight fireworks that have not fully functioned.
- Keep a bucket of water in case of a malfunction or fire.
- Never experiment, take fireworks apart, mix anything with fireworks contents, or try to make fireworks yourself.
- Light one device at a time.
- Keep at a safe distance after lighting devices.
- Dispose of fireworks properly; soak malfunctioning devices with water.
- Always store fireworks in a dry, cool place and avoid rough handling that might damage the fuse or handles.
- Always allow enough room for proper function; never ignite fireworks in metal or glass containers.