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Homeowners Insurance

Fireworks Safety in Florida

Fireworks, it seems, are more popular than ever. No one can deny how exciting and magnificent the spectacle of fireworks is. And yet, thousands of people each year are hurt – and even killed – by fireworks gone wrong.

The number of fireworks injuries throughout the nation have been skyrocketing upward since 2006, according to the most recent report of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

In 2021 alone (the last year included in the report), an estimated 11,500 people went to the emergency room and nine people died as a result of these injuries. When you use fireworks, all of you is at risk: your legs, arms, hands, face, eyes, and more may become injured. Burns are most common, as are other types of injuries.  

The potential harm isn't just bodily injury. Fireworks started nearly 20,000 fires in 2018, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). This means homes, cars, and more were all set ablaze, causing more than $100M in property damage.

Safety Tips

The need to be safe is paramount to being able to enjoy fireworks on July 4 and other times of the year. Here are some fireworks safety tips to practice:

• Use fireworks outdoors only, and away from dry brush/grass, your home or other nearby structures, or any combustible materials

• Keep a bucket of water, working hose, and fire extinguisher nearby

• Never point or throw fireworks at another person

• Light fireworks one at a time, and quickly distance yourself after igniting it

• Keep your face and body as far away as possible from the device you're lighting

• Don't pick up or try to re-ignite fireworks not igniting properly the first time*

• Wear and use appropriate gear: closed-toe shoes, fire- or heat-resistant gloves, protective eyewear, etc.

• Don't handle fireworks if your judgment is impaired

• Don't light fireworks in any type of container

• Use only those sparklers approved by the Florida Bureau of Fire Prevention

• Keep pets inside

• Don't let young children handle fireworks or sparklers

What to do instead: Soak malfunctioning fireworks with water before discarding.

Follow Applicable Laws & Regulations

Before attempting to set off any fireworks yourself, make sure you follow all applicable laws and regulations.

For example, Florida state law allows the use of sparklers, smoke bombs, and cap guns at any time of year. Firecrackers, roman candles, skyrockets, and more are all banned – with 3 noticeable exceptions. A 2020 Florida law now allows three occasions on which fireworks can be legally used: New Year's Eve, New Year's Day, and July Fourth.

Your city or even the HOA overseeing your neighborhood may have additional fireworks safety restrictions you should follow.

Kids & Fireworks

Young children should not hold, ignite, or play with lit fireworks – including sparklers. Sparklers burn at extremely high temperatures, as much as 2,000 degrees or more! This is hot enough to burn metal, so keep little fingers away. You should closely supervise any older children participating in the fireworks.

For children, alternatives to sparklers include glow sticks, noise makers, and silly string.

When using sparklers, fireworks safety is key. Follow all precautions noted above and be sure to hold the sparklers out and away from the body (while keeping your outstretched arm a good distance away from others as well). Once the sizzle has run out, discard the sticks into a bucket of water.

How to Dispose of Used Fireworks

The safest way to dispose of used fireworks is to ensure the spent devices are thoroughly soaked with water before discarding. Then, ideally, place them all in a metal container, such as an old coffee tin and throwing it away in an outdoor trash bin located far away from the house.

Fireworks Safety Can Save Lives

The only truly safe way to enjoy a fireworks display is by attending a professional show hosted by a Florida city or local government near you.

If you're interested in further ensuring the safety of your loved ones, your home and more, contact The Windward Insurance Agency. We offer policies covering homes, condos, boats, cars, motorcycles, ATVs, and much more. Even better: our savvy staff can walk you through all your insurance options and help find the right coverage for you and your family.

Get started today with an online quote (available 24/7) or call The Windward Insurance Agency today at (866) 231-2433 for assistance.