Residents urged to be safe with fireworks

DOWNEY - The Downey fire and police departments are reminding residents to exercise caution and common sense when discharging fireworks.Every year fireworks account for thousands of preventable fires and injuries, authorities said. In 2010, the National Fire Protection Association estimated that fireworks were responsible for an estimated 15,000 fires resulting in $36 million in property damage. Fireworks also caused 8,600 injuries in 2010, mostly to children ages 5-14. Authorities offered the following tips when handling fireworks: Buy only state fire marshal-approved ("safe and sane") fireworks from licensed fireworks stands Always have an adult present (it is illegal for minors to possess fireworks) Never use fireworks near dry grass or other combustible materials Light one firework at a time Keep a safe distance Never point or throw fireworks at another person Have a bucket of water and a hose handy Never attempt to re-light fireworks In Downey, fireworks can be discharged between 3-10 p.m. on July 4 only. "The Downey Fire and Police Departments will be patrolling the neighborhoods to ensure residents are safely and lawfully enjoying the holiday," authorities said in a statement. "Persons engaged in the use of dangerous illegal fireworks such as 'bottle rockets' or 'roman candles' will be issued citations that include fines up to $1,000."

********** Published: June 20, 2013 - Volume 12 - Issue 10