Handle fireworks with safety in mind to enjoy the festivities

Published 7:00 am Thursday, December 28, 2017

With New Year’s Eve this weekend, many families will head to the nearest stand to stock up on firecrackers of different sizes and shapes.

I remember as a child the only reason I would look forward to a festival or any celebration was because that was the only time my mother would allow me to light my own fireworks.

Thinking back on those days, I now understand why she was so concerned. Although setting off fireworks is fun, it is prudent to be cautious when handling them.

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Children should only be allowed to handle fireworks under adult supervision to help prevent accidents from occurring.

Before lighting the firework, make sure you know how it works by reading the instructions carefully. Younger children are best kept at a safe distance from the area where the fireworks will be lit.

Fortunately for Pearl River County residents, there have been several bouts of rain the past couple of weeks. Even still, be sure to look for dry areas or other objects nearby that could easily catch fire before using any kind of firework. Always ignite fireworks outside away from structures, vehicles and propane tanks. When using fireworks, keep a charged hose, fire extinguisher or some other method nearby to put out any small fires that may occur.

Always keep a first-aid kit handy in case of injury.

The National Council of Fireworks Safety suggests leaving duds where they are for at least 20 minutes before dunking them in a container filled with water. Never try to relight a firework that went out. Before lighting any fireworks, be sure to check with your local municipality for any laws prohibiting their use. Within the city of Picayune, fireworks are legal only during the New Year’s and Fourth of July holidays. We hope you keep these precautionary measures in mind and have a safe and blessed New Year.