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FASNY to New Yorkers: Leave fireworks to the pros!


Sat, Jul 1st 2017 12:00 am
Sparklers may be legal, but are still dangerous; FASNY advises against using them
The Fourth of July is rapidly approaching and with it, the time-honored tradition of patriotic firework displays. The Firemen's Association of the State of New York (FASNY) urges New Yorkers not to use fireworks or other similar devices themselves, but instead to leave them to the professionals.
New York recently legalized the use of certain sparkling devices, and many counties now allow the sale of these types of fireworks. Despite their legalization, sparkling devices remain dangerous in amateur hands. According to a National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) report, sparklers accounted for more than a quarter, or approximately 28 percent, of all fireworks injuries in 2014.
Despite their relatively benign appearance, sparklers can be extremely dangerous. The tip of a sparkler burns at a temperature of nearly 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit, which is as hot as a blow torch. Furthermore, nearly half of all fires reported on Independence Day were caused by fireworks or similar devices.
"The misguided legalization of sparklers and other devices does not change the fact that fireworks and sparklers are extremely dangerous," FASNY President Ken Pienkowski said. "Fireworks should only be used by professionals who have undergone the proper training and certification. There are countless, excellent fireworks displays across New York state, and FASNY urges all New Yorkers to enjoy these shows and avoid a serious injury over the holiday."
In 2015, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported 67 percent of all fireworks-related injuries occurred in the month surrounding July 4, and that children and young adults under the age of 20 constituted 42 percent all those injured. For children under the age of 5, sparklers accounted for 65 percent of the total number of injuries sustained.
"We hope everybody has a happy, safe Fourth of July. Should there be an emergency or unsafe situation, we urge New Yorkers to call 911 for help. It's better to be safe than sorry," Pienkowski said.
Founded in 1872, FASNY represents the interests of the approximately 110,000 volunteer firefighters and emergency medical personnel in New York. For more information, visit www.fasny.com

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