GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

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July 4, 2013

Five quick safety tips for using 4th of July fireworks

Stay safe on the 4th of July and avoid being one of the hundreds sent to them emergency room with an injury from a firework.

Staying safe

Leading up to the 4th of July, hundreds of people will visit the emergency room with injuries from fireworks. Hands and fingers account for the most injuries, 46 percent, with sparklers being the single most injury-prone firework according to U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

While injures from fireworks are common, a few simple safety tips can prevent trips to the emergency room on this 4th of July.

Know your fireworks

Make sure you read the warning labels and performance descriptions before igniting. As fireworks can be redesigned from year to year, what performed one way last year might perform differently this year.

Have a designated shooter

For family shows, have one person designated to light and fire your night fireworks. Also, make sure spectators are a safe distance away from the show.

Have parental supervision

Parents and caretakers should always closely supervise teens if they are using fireworks and should not allow young children to handle or use fireworks, including sparklers.

Don't relight the "duds"

Never try to relight a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes before touching the firework and then soak it in a bucket of water.

Soak fireworks

After the fun has passed, soak spent fireworks with water before throwing them away outside.

Think you know all there is to know about fireworks? Take the NCFS quiz on firework safety. Safety tips courtesy of The National Council on Fireworks Safety.

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