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July 4th is just around the corner and that means fun, friends, family and fireworks! But it’s important to practice safety when dealing with fireworks to avoid burn and eye injuries.

Attending public fireworks displays is ideal, but not everyone wants to go that route. So, if you are planning on hosting a barbeque and lighting a few fireworks, please heed the following tips.

Kids should never handle fireworks. Although sparklers are a common kid choice, make sure they hold them away from the face, hair and clothing.

If you have a pet, consider his/her feelings. They have sensitive ears and may be stressed from all the noise.

Buy only legal fireworks. Steer clear of illegal fireworks which typically go by the following names M-80, M100, blockbuster, or quarterpounder. These explosives account for many fireworks injuries although they were banned in 1996.

Fireworks should be used outside only and away from the house. Have a bucket of water or a hose nearby.

Never throw or point fireworks at someone.

Try not to handle fireworks in your hand or any other part of your body while lighting them.

Keep fireworks way from brush, leaves and flammable sources.

Fireworks should be put into the bucket of water before throwing them away to ensure they are no longer lit.

Most of these tips are common sense but still serve as good reminders. Have a Happy Fourth and put safety first!

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