Fireworks Safety Ahead Of Explosive, Patriotic Holiday

FORT SMITH (KFSM) — The Fourth of July is a week away, and a lot of people get into the spirit of the holiday by launching fireworks on their own.

This week, several big tents have popped up in different counties and along major roadways to sell various novelty fireworks.

This includes Cardinal Fireworks along Highway 271, which is just outside of Fort Smith city limits.

“We have lots of families that pool their money together and the come to buy a load of fireworks,” said Angela Crook of Cardinal Fireworks.

Crook said some of their fireworks were damaged by recent rainfall, but she believes the wet weather will be a blessing to sales ultimately.

“It’s going to hopefully reduce any fire risk that there is,” Crook explained.

Although the wet weather may help decrease fire danger, first responders want to remind people, who are launching their own fireworks, that they’re still playing with an exploding device.

“Just because it’s wet, you can still get hurt,” said Carey St. Cyr, a fire marshal at the Fort Smith Fire Department.

This can result in bodily harm such a burns, or damages to property.

Therefore, authorities have the following tips to stay safe while using the fireworks for recreational purposes.

“Don’t ever hold a firework in your hands. Don’t stand directly over it when you light it. If you have one that didn’t go off, don’t try to go over and relight it,” said Poteau Assistant Police Chief Greg Russell.

Instead, Russell says to douse the firework in water until it’s soaked all the way through before picking it up.

If you are looking for specific rules pertaining to launching fireworks in your community, make sure you check with your city hall or fire department because each city and town tends to have differing ordinances.