It is that time of year again, the 4th of July weekend is here! Surprisingly, July 4th has only been a national holiday in the United States since 1941, however, the practice of Independence Day festivities goes back to the 1700’s and the American Revolution.
In 1776, representatives of the 13 colonies then fighting in the revolutionary skirmish considered a resolution that would declare their liberation from Great Britain. On July 2nd 1776, the Continental Congress voted in favor of freedom, and two days after its representatives approved the Declaration of Independence, a momentous text drafted by Thomas Jefferson.
From 1776 until the today, July 4th has been celebrated as the birth of American freedom, with typical celebrations such as: parades, concerts, family get-togethers, barbecues, boating, and other parties. Of course, the 4th of July is also known for plenty of booze and fireworks; this is a dangerous combination to say the very least. It is important that while enjoying your family and fun this weekend, you make sure that you family is safe this 4th of July.
INDEPENDENCE DAY ACCIDENT FACTS
Last year, 11 people died from firework-related accidents. In addition, more than 10,000 were injured by fireworks. Out of the 11 deaths, 3 of those people were not even participating in the fireworks display that took their lives:
A young woman died after someone tossed a sparkler into her apartment complex window. The woman died from smoke inhalation shortly after; and
A couple died after fireworks landed on their roof and caught their house on fire.
Children under the age of 5 account for nearly 1/3 of all fireworks accidents. Additionally, sparklers and less explosive fireworks account for nearly 23% of all fireworks injuries.
INDEPENDENCE DAY FIREWORKS LAWS
In the state of Florida, the following fireworks ARE LEGAL:
For a free legal consultation, call 833-552-7274
Devices approved and listed by State Fire Marshal which emit a shower of sparks upon burning, do not contain any explosive compounds, do not detonate or explode, are hand held or ground based, cannot propel themselves through the air, and that contain no more than 100 grams of the chemical compound that produces sparks upon burning. Any device that is not included in the list of approved items is prohibited, except that snakes, small smoke devices, trick noisemakers and certain other novelties may be sold at all other times.
The following items are ILLEGAL:
Firecrackers, torpedoes, skyrockets, roman candles, daygo bombs, and any fireworks containing explosive or flammable compounds.
Chapter 791, Florida Statutes Rule 69 A-50, Florida Admin. Code
Moreover, your local municipality may have additional legal requirements.
INDEPENDNCE DAY SAFETY ADVICE
Liquor and fireworks equal a formula for misfortune. Thankfully, The National Council on Fireworks Safety has put together a list of firework safety tips seen below. By following these safety tips it is likely that you will drastically reduce your risk of injury during your firework use:
- Follow all local laws regarding the use of fireworks. Check with your state and local codes and statutes regarding fireworks.
- Know your fireworks; read the warning labels and descriptions before lighting.
- Supervise your kids when they have fireworks.
- Don’t light fireworks while drunk.
- Protect your eyes.
- Light one firework at a time and then quickly move away.
- Use fireworks OUTDOORS in a clear area; away from houses and cars.
- Never relight a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes and then immerse it in a container of water.
- At all times have a bucket of water and water hose nearby.
- Do not carry fireworks in your POCKET or shoot them into METAL or GLASS containers.
- Do not experiment with homemade fireworks.
- Dispose of spent fireworks by wetting them down and place in a metal trash can away from any building or combustible materials until the next day.
- FAA regulations PROHIBIT the possession and transportation of fireworks in your baggage.
- Report illegal explosives, like M-80s and quarter sticks, to the fire or police department.
Fireworks accidents can leave victims with substantial medical bills, loss of quality of life, pain and suffering, and lost income, as well as other damages. Fortunately, a skilled attorney might be able to help a victim recover for their losses. To schedule a free consultation with a lawyer at the Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, call our office today at (727) 451-6900.
Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765