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Stay Safe This July 4th Weekend

July 4th weekend is a time for fun, good food, and celebration. Here we offer a couple tips to stay safe so you, family, and friends can enjoy the holiday.

Keeping Your Family Safe Around Fireworks

With 4th of July weekend just around the corner, you may be gearing up for a day of fireworks, backyard barbecues, and possibly even a trip to the beach. Whatever you have planned, it is important to keep safety in mind. According to statistics from 2011, approximately 200 people were sent to the emergency room every day in the month leading up to Independence Day due to firework-related injuries.

In the same year, fireworks caused an estimated 17,800 fires. We encourage you to safely enjoy your 4th of July celebration this year by attending a professionally-handled, public fireworks show. You should also keep fireworks out of the reach of small children—including sparklers. Even “kid friendly” sparklers can reach temperatures above 1,000 degrees, which can cause serious burns if not handled correctly.

Although not recommended, anyone using legal fireworks at home should:

  • Keep a sizeable supply of water close by as a precaution
  • Only light one firework at a time, away from other people
  • Never try to relight a “dud” if it does not go off the first time
  • Never point a firework at other people, animals or homes
  • Store the fireworks in a cool, dry place away from children

Avoid “Peak Hours” for Driving

Every year, around 34 million Americans are expected to travel for 4th of July. Although you may practice safe driving, you never know who else could be on the road. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 4th of July is the worst day of the year for fatal car accidents. In fact, 40% of all highway deaths between 2007 and 2011 were caused by drunk driving over the 4th of July weekend.

If possible, try to avoid driving at “peak hours” for drunk driving—including late at night. If you notice another driver swerving on the road or engaging in potentially dangerous behavior, pull over and contact the police. Not only could you prevent an accident, but you could save someone’s life.

No matter how or where you celebrate, we hope you stay safe and enjoy the holiday. Here’s to a safe and healthy 4th of July celebration!