Be safe on the Fourth

It's a three-day, midsummer celebration likely to be full of picnics, barbecues, boating and other outdoor activities. It's also something that can turn tragic in a second.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 200 people, on average, go to the emergency room with injuries caused by fireworks around the Fourth of July.
Of those injured, 40 percent are between the ages of 25 and 44, and 14 percent are in the 45-64 age range. Twenty percent of those injured are between the ages of 10 and 19.
Topping the list of fireworks that cause injuries are: sparklers, 17 percent; reloadable shells, 14 percent; firecrackers, 13 percent; Roman candles, 7 percent; and bottle rockets, 6 percent.
Hands and fingers sustain the most injuries, 46 percent, followed by eyes, 17 percent, and heads, faces and ears, 17 percent.
Safety tips offered by the USCPS include:
• Never allow children to pay with or ignite fireworks.
• Never try to relight or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
• Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose hand in case of fire or other mishap.
• Make sure that fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them.
• Light one firework at a time, then move away quickly.
Don't let fireworks ruin what otherwise should be a fun holiday weekend.

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