The sight, sound, and smell of fireworks has now become an unavoidable part of the July 4th holiday in many neighborhoods in Michigan, but so have fireworks-related injuries. Twelve years ago, Michigan’s legislature relaxed the restrictions on fireworks, allowing residents to purchase and use fireworks at home. But a 2021 study by the University of Michigan shows that after changes went into effect, the number of patients getting care for fireworks-related injuries at UM trauma centers doubled.
If you’re planning on hosting your own fireworks display at home this year, we’d like to give you some fireworks safety advice so we don’t have to see you with burns (or worse) in our urgent cares!
Of course, if you do find yourself with a burn or other firework-related injury, any one of our eight IEP Urgent Care locations is equipped to treat you quickly, no appointment needed!
Here are some common-sense fireworks safety tips to keep in mind this year:
Leave Fireworks to the Professionals - Go See a Public Display
This tip is so important, we’d really like it to be the only one! There are literally hundreds of professionally-designed public fireworks displays all over the state of Michigan during the week surrounding the July 4th holiday. No matter how much money you spend at that fireworks tent in the parking lot of the auto parts store, you’ll never match the spectacle (and SAFETY) of a public fireworks display. Keep yourself and your family safe this year - here’s a list of Michigan fireworks displays for 2023 that is updated frequently, or check with your local city/township to find the display in your area.
If you still decide to enjoy fireworks with your family at home this year, here are a few tips that will keep you safer:
1. Purchase your fireworks from reliable sources
Remember the tent in the parking lot we mentioned earlier? That might not be the best place to buy a product as dangerous as fireworks! Search out licensed and reputable vendors - this ensures that the fireworks meet safety standards and are of good quality.
2. Choose a safe location and maintain a safe distance
Make sure the area you’re using is large and flat, with enough distance from houses, cars, and most importantly, you and your family and friends. Keep children and pets a safe distance away and always make sure a responsible, sober adult is the one lighting things on fire.
3. Keep a water supply and first-aid close at hand
Have some buckets of water or a hose nearby at the least. If possible, use a hose or sprinkler to soak down the entire area where you’ll be igniting fireworks. A fire extinguisher is highly recommended, and you’ll be happy to have one if something goes wrong - fire moves quickly.
4. Protect yourself
The majority of fireworks injuries occur to the fingers and eyes of the individuals igniting the firework. If you’re that person, wearing eye protection and thick gloves is an easy way to avoid the most common injuries.
All eight IEP Urgent Care locations are open from 8am-8pm weekdays and 8am-6pm weekdays
As much as we enjoy getting to know our neighbors in the communities where IEP Urgent Care is located, we’d rather you stay as safe as possible this July 4th and avoid serious injuries. Enjoy the holiday!