NH Fireworks Facts and Safety Tips for a Safe 4th of July!

Written by on 7/2/2014 7:52 AM in , , , . It has 0 Comments.

It is that wonderful time of year when Americans celebrate the 4th of July with cookouts, apple pie and fireworks.  A display of fireworks is an American tradition that stirs a sense of celebration and patriotism unique to this wonderful time of year.  As New Hampshire is one of the forty states which allows class C fireworks (aka all types of consumer fireworks), please consider the following facts according to the National Fire Protection Agency:

  • In 2011, fireworks caused approximately 17,800 fires including 1,200 total loss structure fires, 400 car fires and 16,300 outside fires.  These fires caused $32 million in property damage, 8 deaths and 40 injuries.
  • The risk of injury caused by fireworks is highest amongst the age group of 15-24 followed by children under 10.
  • There are typically more fires reported on Independence Day than any other day, with fireworks being the most prevalent cause of such fires.

As NH is the Live Free and Die state, you may throw caution to the wind, but please review the following safety tips to ensure your holiday goes off without a bang, or at not least a dangerous bang.

  • Do not allow young children to play with fireworks under any circumstances.
  • Plan in advance where you are going to light off the fireworks.  Keep clear of houses, dry leaves, grills, or other flammable materials.
  • Do not attempt to relight or handle duds.  Soak them in water and then throw them away.  There is obviously something wrong with it, which makes the firework unpredictable.
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby for emergencies and for pouring on fireworks that fail to ignite or explode.
  • Never light fireworks in a container including glass or metal containers.
  • Keep unused fireworks away from firing areas.
  • Store fireworks in a cool dry space or check specific instructions for storage.
  • Do not attempt to light off homemade fireworks.

Just because fireworks are legally sold and purchased in NH does not mean every community allows them carte blanche. Consult the permissible fireworks community restrictions as issued by the New Hampshire Department of Safety.  Please note that this guide was published as of February 6, 2014 so local ordinances may have changed since then.  To be positive about the legality of your fireworks and avoid fines and charges, contact your local fire department in advance.

Please keep in mind that even if fireworks are legal in your town, it does not mean you will not be held liable for any injury or property damage your fireworks display causes!

Perhaps the best advice would be to leave the fireworks to the professionals.  For a list of where to see professional fireworks, check out NH.com/Fireworks.

Happy 4th!

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