Peanut butter and jelly. Macaroni and cheese. 4th of July and fireworks. Some things are just meant to go together! But without the right precautions, accidental fires and damage to your roof can occur when fireworks are used.
In fact, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), more fires are reported on Independence Day than any other day of the year, with more than half those fires caused by fireworks.
Don’t let accidental damage ruin your holiday celebration! This Fourth of July, if you live in an area where fireworks are legal, protect yourself, your family, and your neighbors with these safety tips from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
- Be sure fireworks are legal in your area before using or buying them.
- Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities and never allow children to play with or ignite fireworks. Sparklers alone account for one-quarter of emergency room fireworks injuries.
- If you set off fireworks, keep a bucket of water handy in case of malfunction or fire.
- If fireworks malfunction, don’t relight them! Douse and soak them with water then throw them away.
- Never ignite fireworks in a container, especially one that is glass or metal.
- Use your grill well away from your home and deck railings, and out from under branches or overhangs.
- Open your gas grill before lighting.
- Periodically remove grease or fat buildup in trays below your gas or propane grill so it cannot be ignited.
- Declare a three-foot “kid and pet-free zone” around the grill to keep them safe.
- Avoid loose clothing that can catch fire when cooking on the grill.
Also, keeping your home and roof in tip-top shape can prevent firework sparks from catching fire. Make sure any leaves or other debris are cleared from your roof and gutters and only light fireworks AWAY from your home (and your neighbors).