For Immediate Release
June 30, 2017

The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Urges New Yorkers to Use Fireworks Safely this Fourth of July

The New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency ServicesOffice of Fire Prevention and Control today urged New Yorkers to use an abundance of caution when using approved sparkling devices to celebrate the Fourth of July. While most fireworks remain illegal statewide, certain sparkling devices are legal in 39 counties and the Division reminds individuals to handle these devices safely to avoid serious injuries including burns.

 

Only certain sparkling and novelty devices are legal in parts of New York State and sales in these counties are prohibited to anyone under 18 years of age. The New York State Police has a list of counties where the sale of sparking devices is legal.

 

“Celebrating the Fourth of July with a fireworks show is a traditional part of the American culture,“ said Roger L. Parrino, Sr., Commissioner of the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services. “Your day with family and friends should not include a trip to the emergency room.  Use common sense if you plan to celebrate with fireworks.”

 

Sales of sparkling devices by certified permanent, temporary and specialty retailers ends on July 5. All other types of consumer fireworks, including firecrackers, bottle rockets, roman candles, spinners and aerial devices, remain illegal statewide. Additionally, all consumer fireworks, including sparkling devices, remain fully prohibited in the City of New York. The Office of Fire Prevention and Control has a list of registered sparkling device vendors by county.

 

“As we again prepare to celebrate our nation’s independence, we must caution all New Yorkers that while legal fireworks may appear fun and harmless, they unfortunately can also cause serious injury,” said State Fire Administrator Francis Nerney. “Also remember that every year, far too many people suffer lifelong injuries, and far too many fires are caused by the use of illegal and dangerous fireworks. These injuries and fires can be prevented by leaving fireworks in the hands of professionals.”

 

It is always better to leave the fireworks displays up to the experts, but if sparkling devices are legal to purchase in your county and you choose to use them, be sure to follow these safety tips:

 

  • Always follow the directions located on the packaging
  • Never allow young children to handle fireworks
  • All sparklers are for outdoor use only, never use indoors
  • Always wear eye protection when using sparklers
  • Never light more than one sparkler at a time
  • Never point a sparkler tube towards anyone or any part of your body
  • Keep sparklers and novelty devices in a safe secure location when not in use
  • Never use sparklers when under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Always keep an approved fire extinguisher nearby during a display
  • Never try to relight or handle malfunctioning fireworks
  • Douse malfunctioning and spent devices with water before discarding to prevent a fire
  • Purchase sparklers and novelty devices from New York State registered retailers only

 

For more information on the sale and use of sparkling devices in New York State, visit the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Service’s website at http://www.dhses.ny.gov/ofpc/news/sparklingdevices.cfm

 

About OFPC:

The Office of Fire Prevention and Control delivers a wide breadth of services to firefighters, emergency responders, state and local government agencies, public and private colleges, and the citizens of New York. The office advances public safety through firefighter training, education, fire prevention, investigative, special operations and technical rescue programs. The timely delivery of these essential services enables the office to make significant contributions to the safety of all of New York State.

 

About DHSES:

The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) and its four offices -- Counter Terrorism, Emergency Management, Fire Prevention and Control, and Interoperable and Emergency Communications -- provide leadership, coordination and support for efforts to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism and other man-made and natural disasters, threats, fires and other emergencies. For more information, visit the DHSES Facebook page, follow @NYSDHSES on Twitter, or visit dhses.ny.gov.

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