Dr. Rachel: Keep safety in mind when celebrating America’s birthday with fireworks

NEW ORLEANS -- Happy Birthday, America!

We all love celebrating the Fourth of July.  Being with family and friends enjoying great food, fun, and of course, the fireworks.

But every Fourth of July, thousands of people are injured and even killed due to fireworks, sparklers, bottle rockets, etc.

Here are some tips for fireworks safety, courtesy of our teaching doctor, Dr. Rachel Reitan:

  • Children should never ignite fireworks.
  • Keep kids a safe distance away.
  • Do not wear loose fitting clothes when near fireworks.
  • Never try to re-ignite a firework if it does not go off.
  • Fireworks are not toys.
  • Have a bucket of water or hose available in case of fire.
  • If someone gets burned, remove clothing from the burned area immediately, run cool, not cold water over the area. No ice. And get to an emergency room immediately.
  • If an eye injury occurs, do not try to flush the eye out with water. Instead, cut out the bottom of a paper cup, place it around the eye and get to an emergency room.
  • Sparklers are the second greatest cause of injuries. The tip of a sparkler burns hot enough to cause serious third degree burns.
  • Over 50% of sparkler injuries occur in children under the age of 14, so always have adult supervision when kids are using sparklers.
  • Families should just attend community fireworks displays run by professionals rather than doing their own fireworks at home. It is safer, cheaper, and much more relaxing.