Did you know that in 1997, The United States was averaging 8 injuries per 100,000 pounds of fireworks purchased. That number has been on the decline since then, and in 2008 Americans only injured themselves 3.4 times per 100,000 pounds of fireworks.
In 2008, Americans exploded 208.3 million pounds of fireworks. Those fireworks resulted in 7,000 injuries. That means that 7,000 people found a way to blow a firecracker up in their hand, or shoot their friend in the face with a bottle rockets. In 2009, 5,900 injuries were reported. And that's just the people who reported their injuries. Can you imagine how many people just rubbed some dirt on it and continued about their merry, drunken ways?
Did you also know that there is a National Council on Fireworks Saftey located on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington D.C. Well, there is, and their site fireworksafety.org provides us with some good tips on staying safe this holiday weekend.
- Use fireworks outdoors only.
- Obey local laws. If fireworks are not legal where you live, do not use them.
- Always have water handy. (A hose or bucket).
- Only use fireworks as intended. Don't try to alter them or combine them.
- Never relight a "dud" firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
- Use common sense. Spectators should keep a safe distance from the shooter and the shooter should wear safety glasses.
- Alcohol and fireworks do not mix. Have a "designated shooter."
- Only persons over the age of 12 should be allowed to handle sparklers of any type.
- Do not ever use homemade fireworks of illegal explosives: They can kill you! Report illegal explosives to the fire or police department in your community.
All these are wonderful, common sense tips when working with explosives. It's just a problem when you mix them with men and alcohol. Sorry ladies, men are definitely dumber when it comes to fireworks. I think it's a scientifically proven fact.
In honor our great nation's independence, here are some great YouTube videos of our citizens demonstrating the greatest of all freedoms - the freedom to act like moronic jackasses. Warning: some contain strong language. Enjoy, and be safe folks!