LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - The Louisiana Office of State Fire Marshal issued safety tips ahead of the Fourth of July weekend so families who celebrate at home can enjoy displaying fireworks safely.
As many people opt to purchase fireworks in order to stay safer at home, the State Fire Marshal’s Office reminds residents of the danger of starting a fire.
The National Fire Protection Agency reports an estimated 19,500 fires in 2018, including 1,900 structure fires, 500 vehicle fires and 17,100 outside and other fires. These fires caused five deaths, 46 civilian injuries and $105 million in direct property damage, State Fire Marshal’s Office Ashley Rodrigue said.
If you choose to light fireworks at home, remember to:
· Detonate devices at least 200 feet away from structures, vehicles and rubbish
· Never allow children to light fireworks
· Never operate fireworks while impaired
· Light devices one at a time and monitor embers released with a bucket of water or hose nearby
· Discard detonated items by wetting them down to prevent re-ignition and not disposing of them in a trash container immediately
Although some public fireworks displays were either canceled or altered due to coronavirus concerns, the State Fire Marshal’s Office said to follow CDC and state health guidelines if attending a public display by wearing face coverings and maintaining social distance.
There is no prohibition on the sale of retail fireworks at the state level as a result of COVID-19. However, state law requires wholesale and retail fireworks business operators to be appropriately licensed by the SFM in the parishes and municipalities where they are legally allowed, Rodrigue said.
Read the full statement below: