The Bartow County Fire Department and Cartersville Fire Department urge all citizens to be safe as summer activities begin. According to FEMA, just under 10,000 Americans are injured by fireworks and almost 5,000 are injured by charcoal/wood-burning and propane grills annually.
When enjoying fireworks to celebrate Memorial Day and the Fourth of July, extreme caution is advised. Most precautionary measures appear to be common sense, but accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. Being familiar with the warnings and instructions on all fireworks, keeping a bucket of water nearby and closely supervising children are a few basic tips to reduce injury.
The fire departments urge everyone to be sure to only light fireworks on a smooth, flat surface away from dry leaves, grass, flammable materials and the house. Also, double check that all people are out of range before lighting the explosive.
Although sparkler's are usually passed along for children to light and enjoy, one thing to keep in mind is the tip of a sparkler burns at more than 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit, a temperature that will cause third-degree burns.
Enjoying fireworks at a public display with trained professionals is the suggested method of celebration.
When cooking on grills, extra precaution is also requested. One main tip to follow when using wood-burning and charcoal grills is to never add lighter fluid to an already lit fire as a flashback can occur and create an explosion.
Hot coals should be disposed of properly, never placed in a plastic, paper or wooden container but doused with water, stirred and drowned again to ensure the fire is out.
Grills should be used at a safe distance from homes, preferably 10 feet away from siding and eaves. All hoses and connections should be checked for leaks and blockages before use.
When camping, always follow the park's rules for campfires, keeping them small and away from dry grass and leaves to prevent spreading flames. Campers are requested never to leave fires unattended and be sure to completely douse the area with water to thoroughly extinguish flames.
More U.S. fires are reported on the Fourth of July than on any other day, according to the U.S. Fire Administration. Fireworks account for half of those fires. To prevent accidents, follow all safety precautions. For more tips visit www.usfa.dhs.gov.