Everybody loves the Fourth of July. After all, what's not to like?
Hot weather, swimming, the smell of hot dogs on the grill and, of course, fireworks.
But wait, fireworks are illegal in West Covina and have been for many years. Yet every year, the fire department responds to numerous emergency calls related to fireworks. "Safe and sane" fireworks are illegal in West Covina, and fireworks purchased out of the country are not only illegal but also unsafe.
A recent report prepared by the Consumer Product Safety Commission revealed that nearly 10,000 individuals per year are injured seriously enough to warrant a trip to the hospital. Of these injuries, one third was caused by fireworks that are considered illegal in this country.
Although these numbers are high, they represent a 75 percent decrease in the injury rate because of the outlaw of all fireworks in some cities. Many cities now opt to provide residents with a professional fireworks display, as West Covina does. This allows residents to experience the fun of fireworks without the danger.
But if your Fourth of July travels take you to a city that allows fireworks, there are some things that the fire department would like you to keep in mind:
- Always read and follow the directions
- Have an adult present at all times
- Use outdoors only
- Never experiment or make your own fireworks
- Light only one firework at a time
- Never relight a "dud"
- Always have water handy to thoroughly soak spent fireworks
- Never throw or point fireworks at other people
- Never give fireworks to small children
- Stay away from illegal fireworks
The fire department wants everyone to have a great, safe Fourth of July. Remember that all fireworks are illegal in West Covina.
Firefighters and police officers will patrol the streets to ensure that everyone remains safe and enjoys the holiday responsibly.
For additional information, call West Covina Fire Department Administration at (626) 338-8800.