LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – As we turn the calendar to July, it’s now time to grab the fire crackers and sparklers as Fourth of July celebrations kick off this week. But, before you pick up the lighter, it’s important to take some extra safety precautions.
The TNT stand in Edwardsville is getting ready for the busiest time of the year.
“You can stand back when you’re lighting them and get away quicker and make sure they are out before you touch them,” says Connie Kozo of TNT Fireworks.
She stressed that from the sparklers to the fountains, the risk of setting off your own fireworks is very high, even after they are finished.
“When you are disposing of them, make sure that you’ve watered or waited until they are completely out before you near them,” she says.
When it comes to the kids, it’s important to always have them under supervision.
“Make sure smaller children aren’t setting them off. You have to be eighteen years old to purchase. You always want to have supervision when children are around the fireworks,” Kozo says.
I also sat down with the Wilkes-Barre Fire Chief, Jay Delaney, who says last year’s firework-related injuries were eye-opening after last year’s change to the fireworks law.
“Last year in Wilkes-Barre and most cities across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania were like war zones,” says Chief Jay Delaney.
Even though some of the impacts aren’t always noticeable, it’s the ones that aren’t that can be of the most concern.
“Whatever fire goes into the air, you don’t know where it is going to land, and it could land in your neighbor’s rain gutter and start a fire,” Delaney says.
A lot of people may think that larger fireworks cause a big concern, but a bigger concern is kids using sparklers without supervision.
“A sparkler burns at twelve-hundred degrees. You want to give your child twelve-hundred degrees to walk around with? Sure it looks nice but it can sustain third degree burns from them,” Delaney says.
He adds the best way to stay safe is to have someone who knows how to handle fireworks to avoid injury.
— Eyewitness News, Logan Westrope