Safety Tips for Fireworks

To the Editor:

While the fireworks-related injury numbers are down approximately 
9% and use of consumer fireworks is up by more than 59% over the last twenty years, it is still vital that consumers use the utmost caution with 
the products. Consumer fireworks are truly safer today than ever 
before, and today's smarter buying public uses the products carefully 
and with good common sense resulting in more use of consumer fireworks 
and fewer injuries.

Americans understand the importance of buying consumer fireworks 
only from licensed dealers and to avoid the pitfalls of buying 
overloaded, black-market illegal explosives that are dangerous and can be lethal.

Phantom Fireworks is a charter member of the American Fireworks
Standards Laboratory, which conducts testing of consumer fireworks in 
China for compliance with U.S. manufacturing and performance standards 
as regulated by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. Once the 
products are received at the Phantom Fireworks warehouse in the U.S., the products are re-tested for performance.

When you factor in use to the injury statistics, the improvement 
in fireworks-related injuries is very impressive. Based on injuries 
measured per 100,000 pounds of imported fireworks, there has been a 
remarkable 42.9% reduction in injuries from 10.7 per 100,000 pounds in 
1994 to 6.1 per 100,000 pounds in 2013.

If we work diligently on the safety message and are able to get 
people to follow the safety rules, we can improve the fireworks- 
related safety record and reduce injuries even further.

The cardinal safety rule is to USE COMMON SENSE. 
Some of the primary fireworks safety tips include:

Never allow children to handle fireworks. Only sober adults 
should handle and ignite the fireworks. A designated 
shooter, like a designated driver, should be the one in 
charge of the fireworks.

Use in a clear, open space, free from debris and combustibles. Shoot on a hard, flat surface. Keep your 
audience a safe distance from your launch site and fallout 
zones. A minimum safe distance should be 30 feet for 
ground-based items and 150 feet for aerials.

Have a ready source of water close by. A connected hose is 
best, but a bucket of water or fire extinguisher will do. 
Someone should act as the fireman - someone to visually track the burning projectiles down to make sure nothing 
comes down hot.

Do not relight duds. Follow all laws. Use a long-neck 
butane lighter, punk or Phantom Pyro torch to light the 
fireworks. Never put any part of your body over a firework 
or in its travel path.

For a complete list of all of Phantom's recommended fireworks 
safety tips, visit the "Fireworks University" section of www.fireworks.com at www.fireworks.com/fireworks- 
university/fireworks-safety-tips.

Let's continue the great American tradition envisioned by John 
Adams of celebrating with fireworks when the then future President 
wrote in a letter to his wife Abigail in 1776 that the Independence 
Day holiday "ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, bonfires and illuminations (fireworks) from one end of this continent to the other, 
from this day forward forevermore."

Please enjoy the Independence Day holiday with your family and 
celebrate safely.

William A. Weimer, vice president

Phantom Fireworks

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