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The Fourth of July is a time for celebration across the country, and fireworks are a crowd favorite each year. Safe Kids Georgia reminds parents that while fireworks can be fun to watch, they also can be dangerous, especially around kids, so whenever possible, leave the firework displays to the professionals.

Fireworks, including sparklers and flares, can cause serious burns as well as blast injuries that can permanently impair vision and hearing. In 2013, an estimated 649 children ages 19 and under had injuries involving fireworks that resulted in trips to the emergency room.

“Children account for 50 percent of the estimated fireworks injuries,” said Laura Coleman, Safe Kids Georgia Operations Coordinator. “The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to watch them at a community event where professionals handle them. If you plan to use fireworks, there are precautions you can take such as having a bucket of water and a fire extinguisher nearby to keep everyone as safe as possible.”

Safe Kids Georgia recommends the following top tips to keep kids safe around fireworks.

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Where permitted by law, fireworks should be handled and used in strict accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions and all warning labels. Safe Kids urges families to enjoy public fireworks displays instead of attempting to use fireworks at home.

Download a full fire safety checklist!

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