Setting off fireworks is something many children look forward to doing around the Fourth of July. While older kids enjoy setting off fireworks with adult supervision, many younger children want to participate as well.
Many parents allow their young children to use sparklers, a seemingly safe option.
But how safe are sparklers?
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, approximately 1,200 people visited the emergency room in 2017 due to sparkler-related injuries. This accounted for 14 percent of all fireworks-related injuries reported.
Sparklers can reach 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit. This is hot enough to melt some metals.
Sparklers can be dangerous in many ways:
- Sparklers can burn the skin or eyes of the user
- Sparks can ignite flammable clothing
- If thrown on the ground, someone could step on a hot sparkler
- If thrown on the ground, the sparkler could start a fire
What can parents do to help keep their kids while using sparklers?
- Ensure that children under the age of 10 are supervised by an adult
- Ensure that sparklers are used only outside
- Hold sparklers far away from the body and other people
- Discard used sparklers in a bucket of water instead of throwing them on the ground
- Consider purchasing bamboo sparklers, which don’t retain heat as much as metal sparklers, reducing the risk of getting burned
Keep these safety tips in mind as you enjoy the Fourth of July with your family. It is possible to enjoy sparklers and other fireworks in a safe and responsible manner.