Fireworks safety tips offered

On the Fourth of July, residents can follow some safety tips to avoid injuries with fireworks.

While consumer grade fireworks are allowed between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. from July 2 and July 4 in Kansas City, Kansas, the Kansas City, Kansas, Fire Department is urging residents and visitors to be cautious when using them.

Each year, almost 10,000 people are injured as a result of the improper use of fireworks, according to information from Fire Marshal John Droppelmann.

There are fireworks displays available for the public to watch, including one at 9:45 p.m. July 3 at Pierson Park, 1800 S. 55th St., Kansas City, Kansas, which is sponsored by the Turner Recreation Commission and the Unified Government Parks Department. It is open to the public. There will be no parking on the left side of the street, and no outside fireworks will be allowed into the park.

The Fire Department is encouraging residents to follow these safety tips to reduce the potential for injuries this year:

• Purchase fireworks from reliable sources, never discharge homemade or illegal fireworks.

• Have a responsible adult in charge and never give fireworks to children.

• Always read and follow label instructions for the safe discharge of fireworks.

• Prepare a safe environment outdoors for the shooting of fireworks by selecting an area clear of other fireworks, and clear of combustible materials such as dried wood, grass and structure. Also, cut the rass low in the areas where fireworks will be discharged.

• Have water readily available, such as a garden hose or bucket; pump sprayers are reasonably priced and portable should a grass fire ignite.

• Never carry fireworks in your pockets.

• When lighting fireworks, never position any part of your body over the fireworks.

• Do not shoot or point fireworks at people or animals.

• Light fireworks one at a time and wait until it discharges; never attempt to re-light a device that did not discharge the first time. Wait 20 minutes to approach the “dud” and soak it with water.

• Never shoot fireworks in metal or glass containers.

• It is illegal to shoot fireworks from, on, or under a vehicle.

• It is illegal to shoot fireworks on any public roadway, alley or sidewalk; within 150 feet of a fireworks stand, within 100 feet of a gas station, or within 1,000 feet of a hospital or home for the aged.

• Fireworks may be discharged between the hours of 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. July 2 to 4.

The Fire Department wishes all residents and visitors a safe and happy Fourth of July, a spokesman said. For more information, contact the fire marshal’s office, 913-573-5550.

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