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Kids and Fireworks Shouldn't Mix
"Never, under any circumstances, let children play with fireworks," warns Angelica Higgins, MD, a board-certified specialist in Pediatrics at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic. "Fireworks should only be handled by responsible adults."
Dr. Higgins says parents must exercise caution because children focus on the exciting visual aspects of fireworks and usually aren't aware of the dangers.
"Most fireworks-related injuries occur around the Fourth of July, and almost half of those harm children younger than 15," she says. "The most common injuries are from burns caused by mishandled firecrackers, bottle rockets, and sparklers."
If you decide to use fireworks, make sure you also use common sense and follow these safety tips:
- Never allow small children near fireworks.
- Keep a bucket of water nearby.
- If a fireworks piece fizzles out, douse it with water and do not attempt to relight.
- Sparklers may look harmless, but they can reach 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit and cause serious burns.
- Wear safety glasses when lighting fireworks.
- Light only one piece at a time.
- Never lean over the top of the fireworks to light.
- Soak all used fireworks in a bucket of water before discarding.
"I understand that fireworks are a Fourth of July and New Year's Eve tradition for many families. Do your part to make the celebration a safe one for your family and those around you," concludes Dr. Higgins.
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