Fireworks Safety: Firefighters offer tips to staying safe this summer

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) -- Rainy weather and coronavirus concerns won't stop opening weekend for firework sales across Missouri.

While vendors are anticipating business, firefighters want you to keep safety top of mind as the season kicks off.

The Logan-Rogersville Fire Protection District stressed the importance of safety to prevent burns or severe injuries this season, offering the following safety tips:

-Thoroughly read instructions

Assistant Fire Chief Russ Lafferty said, read the instructions before using fireworks. Although you may have lit fireworks every year, you must read the instructions on the packaging to ensure your safety and the safety of those around you.

-Always have water nearby

Have water within reach just in case. Lafferty said, keep a bucket of water and garden hoes nearby to fully extinguish fireworks that don't go off or in the unfortunate event of a fire.

-Keep children away from fireworks

Keep the little ones away from the fireworks. So they don't feel left out, use glow sticks or lights as a fun alternative to joining in on the festivities. However, Lafferty said, for the older kids, make sure if they are using them, they are closely monitored.

-Dispose of fireworks properly

After all the fun is had, Lafferty said disposing of them safely is vital. He said you should soak both spent and unused fireworks in water for a few hours before discarding.

"Don't grab your spent fireworks and throw them in the trash can then put it in the garage at the end of the night," he explained. "Because they can catch fire later on in the evening."

Lafferty said common injuries are from sparklers. He said they could reach up to very high temps, so he recommended not touching the part of the sparkler that has burned for up to twenty minutes, and dispose of in a nearby water bucket.

Springfield long-standing firework vendor, R&R Fireworks, said they have tons of options that the entire family can enjoy, including new glowstick sparklers.

Operator Andrew Richardson said although they've been open for three decades, they still review safety tips and answer all questions and concerns for customers. He said the goal is to ensure everyone has a great time without having to go to the emergency room.