It's almost the Fourth of July, and that of course means fireworks.  Not just on the Fourth but for many days leading up and several after, people will be blasting off all kinds of celebratory incendiary items.

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Every year around the big holiday, there are many accidents involving fireworks.  Usually in the form of burns, but sometimes even worse.  People have blown off fingers and lost eyes to not exercising proper fireworks safety.  With that in mind, let's dive into some pretty basic safety tips that can help you have a good time but reduce the risk to yourself and others on the Fourth.

Don't let kids handle fireworks

Pretty simple concept, right?  But it can be tough, especially because fireworks are fun for adults and kids alike.  Even when it comes to items like sparklers, some kids are just too young and can end up getting burned.  Also, with any items that have fuses, sometimes they go really quickly, and a child might not be as quick to react in that situation.  As much as the kids might want to help and be a part of the action, it's best to have an adult run the show,

Don't light fireworks indoors

This should be common sense, but is a commonsense society one we live in?  Not so much.  This one shouldn't even have to be stated but the heat, sparks, and explosion from fireworks can turn into a housefire really quickly if you choose to light them indoors.  Keep in mind too that modern building materials go up in flames much faster than older and more well-built structures.  Don't just keep them outside of the house, keep them a decent distance from the house too.  A housefire would make for a pretty unhappy Fourth of July.

Keep water or a fire extinguisher close by

With fireworks, it's hard to always know if they will work as advertised.  Sometimes they are loaded a little heavy and the explosion is bigger than you would think.  They also will kick off faster than anticipated and things can get out of hand quickly.  If not a fire extinguisher, keep a bucket of water or a garden hose nearby in case you catch the house, shed, or yourself on fire.

Wear eye protection when using fireworks

I don't mean to be Mr. OSHA on this one, but seriously think about it.  Eye injuries can happen really fast, and we only get one set of eyes.  A decent pair of safety glasses aren't that spendy and can really make a huge difference if something on fire decides to come your way.  Also, speaking form experience, eye injuries are incredibly painful, so protect your peepers.

Alcohol and fireworks shouldn't be mixed

Alcohol impairs judgement and a lot of times when people get hurt by fireworks, there was alcohol involved.  It might seem fun while you're doing it but think of how much fun a trip to the ER is, or even worse if your drunken shenanigans hurt someone else.  You could even be talking potential criminal liability.

There are of course many other things to add to the list and a more complete one is provided by the National Safety Council.  One such tip I didn't include above is to leave fireworks to the professionals, as in go watch them somewhere.  If you're looking for somewhere to take the family for a great show near you, check out the 2022 Northern Minnesota and Wisconsin Fourth of July Fireworks Schedule.

5 Types of Fireworks That Are Illegal in Minnesota

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