VinTech wishes you a Happy Independence Day! Enjoy the holiday safely by following these safety tips:
- Use fireworks outdoors only.
- Obey local laws. If fireworks are not legal where you live, do not use them.
- Buy only legal fireworks (legal fireworks have a label with the manufacturer’s name and directions; illegal ones are unlabeled), and store them in a cool, dry place. Illegal fireworks usually go by the names M-80, M100, blockbuster, or quarterpounder. These explosives were banned in 1966, but still account for many fireworks injuries.
- Always have water handy (A hose or bucket).
- Only use fireworks as intended. Don’t try to alter them or combine them.
- Never relight a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
- Use common sense. Spectators should keep a safe distance from the shooter and the shooter should wear safety glasses. Fireworks have been known to backfire or shoot off in the wrong direction. Never throw or point fireworks at someone, even in jest.
- Point fireworks away from homes, and keep away from brush and leaves and flammable substances. The National Fire Protection Association estimates that local fire departments respond to more than 50,000 fires caused by fireworks each year.
- Alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Have a “designated shooter.”
- Only persons over the age of 12 should be allowed to handle sparklers of any type. Things like firecrackers, rockets, and sparklers are just too dangerous. If you give kids sparklers, make sure they keep them outside and away from the face, clothing, and hair. Sparklers can reach 1,800° Fahrenheit (982° Celsius) — hot enough to melt gold.
- Do not ever use homemade fireworks of illegal explosives: They can kill you! Report illegal explosives to the fire or police department in your community.
- 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’ll run loose or get injured.
To enjoy a fireworks show in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, check out the schedule here.