On July 4, 2019, Americans across the country celebrated Independence Day with the traditional and patriotic fanfare. Parties, camping, barbeques, parades – no matter your preference, 4th of July just isn’t complete without one special addition: fireworks.
But why should fireworks be limited to a single holiday? For better and worse, Georgia law says that it’s completely legal to set off fireworks from 10 a.m. to 11:59 p.m., no matter the day. This policy includes all types of fireworks, from bottle rockets to display shells to sparklers. Plus, all consumer firework sales are legal within the state.
However, there are a few regulations to consider before having a fireworks fiesta:
- You must be 18 years old to purchase and light fireworks.
- You cannot break local noise ordinances.
- You can only set off fireworks if you’re in a clear, open area with a nearby water source.
- You cannot use fireworks within 100 yards of a hospital, park, nursing home, gas station, and other potentially hazardous locations.
- You need to consider the community around you before lighting up the sky: some people suffer psychological disorders, such as PTSD, and could suffer harm if they’re startled by the sound of fireworks.
- You should review your community’s laws and bylines, and avoid setting fireworks off near roads and highways.
How Can I Safely Use Fireworks?
Last June, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) tried to promote firework safety by releasing their “2018 Fireworks Annual Report.” According to this report, over 9,000 Americans – including countless Georgians – suffer fireworks-related injuries each year. Tragically, this statistic includes about 3,000 children.
While fireworks are legal, you need to stay safe and be aware of your immediate surroundings. To help you avoid a trip to the emergency room, the personal injury attorneys at Pratt Clay, LLC have compiled the following list of fireworks safety tips:
- Always light fireworks on level concrete, and never in a metal or glass container.
- Wear protective glasses and clothing that won’t easily catch on fire (avoid loose and hanging fabrics).
- Never carry fireworks in your purse, pocket, or the waistband of your pants.
- Only light one firework at a time and make sure children and pets are at least 30 feet away.
- Don’t place any part of your body directly over a product while it is being lit.
- Read and follow any label instructions before lighting a product.
- Never experiment or attempt to create your own fireworks.
- Do not pick up, play with, or relight a “dud” item that failed to ignite.
- Never give fireworks to young children.
- Don’t point or throw fireworks at another person or animal.
- Keep a hose and a bucket of water nearby to douse sparklers and other novelty items.
- Make sure an adult is always present to supervise party and/or family firework displays.
- Avoid purchasing or lighting items that have been unwrapped or visibly tampered with.
- Keep a fire extinguisher on hand, just in case.
- Call 911 if you need emergency assistance.
Retain Experienced Legal Representation Today
Contact personal injury attorneys at Pratt Clay, LLC if you require legal representation after a fireworks-related incident. Our legal team has an inclusive understanding of the various laws and regulations that could impact the outcome of your case. You can trust our lawyers to investigate your case, identify any negligent parties, and aggressively negotiate or litigate on your behalf for a favorable case result.