Fourth of July celebrations are fun, but firework safety is no. 1

Fourth of July celebrations are fun, but firework safety is no. 1

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - If you are planning on enjoying the 4th of July at home with friends and holding your own fireworks celebration, there are risks involved.

We know that fireworks can be dangerous and often times unpredictable, even something as small as a can cause a lot of damage, or an unexpected accident.

Which is exactly what we found when we tested some of the most popular one's children often flock to in local firework stores.

It wasn't exactly an explosion, but the insides of this watermelon give you a glance at the damage these fireworks can cause to your skin. And it didn't go exactly as we planned either - a malfunction derailed the demonstration.

The fireworks were so powerful, it flew out of the watermelon and landed on the ground just feet away from where we were standing…sparks flying in our direction.

"You light it in one area and it may malfunction and jump to another area," Columbia Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins said. "It could very easily catch something on fire."

In fact, it did, which shows how easy it can be to lose control of a situation.

Approximately 11,000 people will end up in the hospital each year related to firework mishaps – according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. As children head out to pick up some of the most popular fireworks, the sparkler is always one that attracts children.

Using a thermal imaging camera a sparkler burned at 900 degrees - hotter than any grill or oven. In 2016, Columbia Fire responded to 18 firework incidents in one night, and say they're gearing up for another busy holiday.

So when you light the fuse – remember to keep water nearby, sand helps put sparklers out, use bricks to keep your fireworks steady on the ground.

And children should always have adult supervision when handling fireworks.

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