Living Well: Enjoy fireworks safely on the 4th
It’s Fourth of July, and, no doubt, you want to celebrate. Go ahead, set off a few permissible fireworks — namely, anything that doesn’t explode or leave the ground. As for the rest of the stuff, leave it at the stands in Wyoming where it belongs.
Even the allowed fireworks must be handled with care. Take sparklers, for instance. Did you know they burn at an average temperature of 2,000 degrees? That’s hot enough to melt some metals. Makes you think twice before handing one to your kids, doesn’t it?
Best yet, leave the fireworks behind and come out and enjoy the city’s Fourth of July Parade and Picnic (sponsored by the VFW, Ladies Auxiliary Post 4265 and the American Legion Post 62).
Following the parade, a community picnic with games for children, as well as a money pit and prizes, will be offered. Bring your favorite dessert to share. Later, enjoy the fire department’s fireworks show near the high school at dusk.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 200 people, on average, visit the emergency room each day during the Fourth of July holiday week. The majority of injuries occur to the hands, fingers, face, head and ears. Kids are most vulnerable to injuries. If you want to set off a few allowed fireworks, do so with safety and caution.
Fireworks safety tips
An emergency department physician at Memorial Regional Health warns parents to never spray their children with insect repellent or sunscreen, then hand them a sparkler or seat them beside a campfire. That’s because repellent and sunscreen are flammable, and severe burns can result.
The CPSC recommends the following safety measures when using fireworks.
• Only ignite fireworks deemed legal in your area.
• Only adults, never children, should light fireworks. If children are present, always have an adult around to supervise.
• Don’t try to relight or pick up a firework that doesn’t ignite fully.
• Be mindful of where you point fireworks — always direct them away from people or pets.
• Keep a bucket of water or garden hose handy for mishaps and dousing fireworks after use.’
• After lighting a firework, move away quickly.
• Remember, those younger than age 16 are not allowed to carry or set off fireworks without supervision.
• Wear eye protection. and always follow label instructions.
What’s legal, what’s not?
Fireworks deemed legal in Colorado include toy propellants and smoke devices, trick noise makers, glow worms, snakes, sparklers and dipped sticks, illuminating torches and colored fire, ground spinners, wheels and cone fountains.
Illegal fireworks include anything that projects or disburses glass, metal or brittle plastic fragments, Roman candles, cherry bombs, firecrackers, bottle rockets and other rockets, including M-80s and M-100s, helicopters and more. Remember, if it explodes or leaves the ground, it’s illegal in Colorado.
MRH Medical Clinic, Rapid Care closed July 4
If injury occurs, seek medical treatment promptly. The Memorial Regional Health Medical Clinic and Rapid Care Clinic are closed on the Fourth of July, but the emergency room at the hospital is always open.