Firefighters urge safety during Fourth of July holiday

They're something many people use to celebrate the Fourth of July, but fireworks can be very dangerous if not used properly.

Firefighters say attending organized fireworks displays is the safest way to view fireworks.

But if you want to buy some to use at home, the Lexington Fire Department has provided the following tips to make your celebration as safe as possible.

Buy fireworks only from a licensed store or stand.

Follow directions on firework packaging. Do not combine multiple types or light many fireworks at one time.

Never allow young children to handle fireworks.

Only use fireworks outdoors and away from buildings and vehicles.

Never re-ignite malfunctioning fireworks.

Keep a bucket of water or hose nearby to extinguish sparklers and malfunctioning fireworks.

Never throw sparklers or fireworks at other people. Stand at least 6 feet from other people while using sparklers.

Spectators should keep a safe distance from the firework shooter. The firework handler should wear protective glasses.

Do not carry fireworks in your pockets.

Alcohol and fireworks are a dangerous combination. Do not drink and handle fireworks.

Fireworks that have wings, fins, or other parts that would cause them to fly are banned for general consumer use in Kentucky.

Fireworks that contain the terms "explosive," "emits flaming pellets," "flaming balls," "firecracker," "report or rocket" are also illegal.

"A good rule of thumb is if it blows up or goes up, it is more dangerous and thus illegal in Kentucky," Lexington Fire Department Battalion Chief Marshall Griggs said.

Ground and handheld sparkling devices and other fireworks that make noise or smoke are allowed in Kentucky.

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