The Richard M. Fairbanks Burn Center Urges Caution this Summer

Fireworks, backyard grilling and the Fourth of July holiday have been a cherished combination seemingly forever, but as much fun as those great family traditions are, there are potential dangers associated with them that we all must be aware of as our nation’s birthday draws near.

The Richard M. Fairbanks Burn Center at Eskenazi Health and Indianapolis Emergency Medical Services (EMS) urges everyone to avoid lighting their own fireworks this Fourth of July weekend, and at any time, and be extra careful while grilling.

If you do decide to light fireworks at home, exercise extreme caution, and be sure to follow these precautions:

  • Never allow children to light or play with fireworks.
  • Avoid buying fireworks in brown paper packaging, which is a sign they are made for professional displays.
  • Light fireworks one at a time, then move away quickly.
  • If you are lighting fireworks, avoid wearing loose clothing that could catch fire.
  • Keep a bucket of water or garden hose nearby in case of fire.
  • Never try to relight a burned out or “dud” firework. Soak it in water, and throw it away.
  • Never take fireworks apart or modify them in any way.

Like fireworks, cooking items on a grill are customary and enjoyable aspects of Fourth of July celebrations. However, there are precautions that should be adhered to in order to make grilling a safe and pleasant experience. To keep you and your family safe, please follow these guidelines:

  • Propane and charcoal grills should only be used outdoors.
  • Grills should be located well away from the home, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep children and pets away from the grilling area.
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill.
  • Never leave your grill unattended.


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