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Safety First!

When asked, most people associate the 4th of July with 2 things, our nation’s birthday and FIREWORKS! We all know how different this year has been due to the Coronavirus, and with many planned firework celebrations being canceled, more firework celebrations will be held at home by untrained professionals. In Connecticut, fireworks are limited to those 16 and up, and only handheld and ground-based sparkling devices that are non-explosive and non-aerial are permissible by law. Allowed fireworks also must not contain more than 100 grams of pyrotechnic composition per item.

If you are planning on a firework celebration this weekend, these tips hopefully can help keep you safe.

- Clear a large area around fireworks before you light them - Position fireworks downwind from spectators - Spectators should stand 25 feet or more away - Wear safety glasses - Do not light a firework in your hand - Keep pets inside - Douse all firework devices with water when done

Each year, almost 20,000 fires are reported and thousands of emergency room visits are caused by fireworks. The most common injuries are burns, but severe damage can be done to the body as well. A minor burn is considered a red and painful burn, smaller than your hand with a small blister or blisters. Immediately run the area under cool water for least 10 mins and cover with a non-adherent pad. Aloe Vera can be used to soothe after initial treatment. Major burns result in significant blistering and damage to the skin. Cool the burn immediately with running water, if it is a large area, a hose or buckets can be used, call 911, and cover the wound with a sterile protective dressing if possible.

Emergency services are recommended for any major burn or more significant injury as well as if the injured person is young, old, or in frail condition. Remember, these tips can help prevent any injuries or fires, but they are not foolproof. Keep in mind that just a sparkler burns at 1200ºF, any firework is dangerous!

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