Fireworks Safety 2017

June 28, 2017 11:40 AM
With the 4th of July fast approaching, the Galesburg Fire Department would like to remind everyone to celebrate safely this summer. Fireworks are dangerous and unpredictable, and can result in severe burns, scars, lifetime disfigurement or even death. In recent years, fireworks have been one of the leading causes of injuries serious enough to require hospital emergency room treatment. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), amateur fireworks use endangers not only the users, but also bystanders and surrounding property and structures. 
"GFD wants everyone to have a safe Independence Day and remember fireworks safety is not a supervision issue. An injury from fireworks can happen in the blink of an eye, whether or not a parent or other responsible adult is present," said Captain Derek Perry. 
State and local law classifies fireworks into three categories:
1. Novelty Fireworks:  Sparklers, Snakes or Glow Worms, Smoke bombs, Noisemaker such as Party Poppers, and other similar devices. These are legal to all residents in Illinois and the City of Galesburg.  However, in Galesburg, they must be used on private property.
2. Consumer Fireworks:  Includes fountains, comets, parachutes, etc that are approved by the Illinois Office of the State Fire Marshal. Specifically prohibited are firecrackers, bottle rockets, Roman candles, pinwheels or any hand held firework.  Consumer fireworks require an individual to take a fireworks training class approved by the Office of the State Fire Marshall, a private site 200 ft from any structure or property line and a $30 permit issued by the City of Galesburg fifteen days prior to the display.
3. Display Fireworks: These fireworks require an individual that is licensed by the Office of the State Fire Marshall as well as employed by a licensed pyrotechnic distributor.
These rules apply throughout the state but in Galesburg are also subject to a $75 administrative ticket. A public firework display is the smartest and safest fireworks alternative for anyone because they are established under controlled settings and regulations.
Sparklers became legal in Galesburg in 2001 and outside of illegal fireworks, pose the greatest danger to users. Sparklers burn at over 1,200 degrees and can cause deep tissue burns.  If you choose to use sparklers, The National Council on Fireworks Safety offers the following safety tips for sparklers:
  • Always read and follow instructions. Always have an adult present.
  • Keep burning sparklers away from clothing and flammable objects.
  • Only use sparklers outdoors, away from buildings and vehicles.
  • Light only one sparkler at a time.
  • Alcohol, fireworks and sparklers do not mix. Be responsible.
  • Do not point or throw sparklers at another person
  • Children under the age of 12 should not handle sparklers.
  • When finished, place used sparklers in a bucket of water.

Have a safe and enjoyable 4th of July!! 


For more information:

Sources: National Fire Protection Association, the National Council on Fireworks Safety, Office of the State Fire Marshall





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