GREENSBORO, N.C. — If you wet down your yard, can you do your home fireworks on the lawn? Are firecrackers safe if you let them go off inside a garbage can? The answers to both of those questions are no. Assistant Chief Tad Byrum from the Winston-Salem Fire Department joined 2WTK to talk about fireworks safety and all-around fire safety.
To be clear, the fire department isn’t saying home fireworks are safe and okay to use.
“Just because a firework is legal doesn't mean it isn't dangerous,” said Byrum.
For example, sparklers are a staple. But they burn at a sustained temperature of over 2000°. Your aluminum siding melts at 1220°.
North Carolina General Statutes allow the use of consumer fireworks that are called "Safe and Sane." These include sparklers, glow worms, snakes, smoke bombs, and trick noisemakers.
The following are illegal by NC General Statutes: fireworks that become airborne, explode, or spin (firecrackers, bottle rockets, roman candles, mortars, etc)
The most injured body parts are the Hand/finger, then legs and eyes run second and third. According to the National Fire Protection Association, more than 44% of the injuries were burned.
House fires start due to fireworks. In 2020, a Winston-Salem family lost their home due to fireworks that were improperly disposed of.
"They're still hot so they can cause a fire and it is important to submerge them in water and to leave them away from the combustibles,” said Winston-Salem Battalion Chief Joe Ramsey.
If you chose to consumer fireworks, we urge you to do the following:
Do not use them during dry conditions, especially if a burning ban is in effect. Have a phone nearby. Call 911 immediately if there is an injury or fire. Have a bucket of water and a garden hose immediately close by. Closely supervise children and do not let them light or hold fireworks. Wear eye protection
Do not light fireworks on a grass surface. Point fireworks away from people, animals, buildings, cars, trees, bushes, and combustible landscaping.
Do not attempt to re-light "duds." If it doesn't work the first time, douse it with water. Spent fireworks should be doused with water before discarding them. Never try to make your own fireworks or tamper with commercially bought fireworks. Alcohol and fireworks do not mix
Have consideration for your neighbors and pets
ALWAYS keep fireworks, lighters, and matches out of the hands of children