With July 4 coming, so is the possibility for firework-related burn injuries. Here are a few tips on what to do, and what not to do, when it comes to fireworks, according to Apryl McGill, RN, Utica Park Clinic outpatient burn nurse.
If a burn does occur:
- Cool the burn with cool, not cold, water to stop the burning process. Cold water and ice are never a good idea, as they both can deepen the burn injury.
- Remove all clothing and jewelry from the injured area.
- Cover the area with a clean, dry sheet or loose bandage.
- Seek medical attention immediately.
How to prevent firework burn injuries:
- Consider safer alternatives such as glow sticks, confetti poppers or colored streamers.
- Observe your local and state firework laws.
- Have a designated sober adult light all legal fireworks.
- Keep children and other observers at a safe distance – behind a protective barrier.
- Store fireworks out of reach of children.
- Keep a bucket of water close for disposal of fireworks.
What not to do:
- Allow children to handle fireworks – including sparkers and smoke bombs.
- Attempt to alter, modify or relight fireworks.
- Allow children to pick up the spent fireworks as some may still be active.
- Hold lit fireworks in your hands.
- Consume alcohol or drugs with lighting fireworks.
- Forget you can be held legally and financially liable for firework injuries.