Celebrate the Fourth of July Safely and Legally

CAL FIRE Urges All Californians to Celebrate the Fourth of July Safely and Legally
With warm weather and family events, the Fourth of July can be a fun time to create great memories.  It can also be a tragic time for fires and critical burn injuries. CAL FIRE would like to remind all Californians that before your family celebrates, make sure everyone knows about fireworks safety.

“Fireworks not only create significant dangers to citizens when used improperly or illegally, but also increase the demands on fire departments and firefighters,” said CAL FIRE Director Del Walters.  “We recommend that you and your family make memories by attending a local professional fireworks display.  If you live in a jurisdiction that allows fireworks, only use legal fireworks displaying the “Safe and Sane” State Fire Marshal seal and follow common sense practices to ensure your Fourth of July holiday remains festive and safe.”

Consumers who choose to purchase legal fireworks need to obey local laws.  State fire officials urge you to check first with your local fire department or jurisdiction to find out if fireworks are permitted in your area.  If you live in a community that allows the use of State Fire Marshal approved “Safe and Sane” Fireworks, make sure you only use those fireworks where you purchased them.

It is illegal to transport, store, use, sell or possess fireworks where they are not allowed or are illegal.  CAL FIRE Law Enforcement officers in cooperation with local law enforcement agencies will have zero-tolerance for individuals that transport, possess, store, sell, or use fireworks in the wildlands or communities where they are prohibited and illegal.

The celebration of the 4th of July should not be an excuse to put Californians at risk of fire or injury.

If you live in a community that allows State Fire Marshal approved “Safe and Sane” fireworks, CAL FIRE encourages you to follow these fireworks safety tips:

  • Use fireworks outdoors only.
  • Make sure fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them!
  • Only light fireworks on a smooth, flat surface away from the house, dry leaves, and flammable materials.
  • Always have water handy; either by hose or bucket.
  • Only use fireworks as intended.  Don’t try to alter or combine them.
  • Never relight a “dud” firework.  Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
  • Adults should always supervise fireworks activities.  Never allow children to play with or ignite fireworks.
  • Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
  • Think about your pet.  Animals have sensitive ears and can be extremely frightened or stressed on the Fourth of July.  Keep pets indoors to reduce the risk that they will run loose or get injured.
Remember that fireworks are not toys and they should always be used in a safe and legal manner.  CAL FIRE wants everyone to have a safe and memorable Fourth of July holiday.

For more information about safe fireworks use, visit the CAL FIRE web site at www.fire.ca.gov.


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