Newsroom > DHHS News Release

June 28, 2010

Marla Augustine, Communications and Legislative Services, (402) 471-4047 or

Sound bites from Dr. Joann Schaefer, Chief Medical Officer, are available at

Have a Safe and Happy Fourth of July

Lincoln— Rockets’ red glare? Bombs bursting in air? Celebrate the 4th safely.

Picnic and parades are Fourth of July favorites, but it’s the fireworks that make this patriotic holiday special. A safe way to enjoy fireworks is to watch them at a community display where professionals are in charge of the celebration. But, if you decide to put on your own fireworks display, make safety a priority by keeping in mind these important tips:

  • Older children should use fireworks only under close adult supervision. Never allow young children to handle fireworks, especially sparklers.
  • Light fireworks outdoors in a clear area, on a smooth, flat surface, away from onlookers, houses and flammable materials.
  • Light one device at a time; maintain a safe distance after lighting.
  • Never ignite devices in a metal or glass container.
  • Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks; douse and soak them with water and discard them safely.
  • Have a garden hose and bucket filled with water nearby to fully extinguish fireworks that don't go off or in case of fire.
  • Stay away from illegal or homemade fireworks, which can often be deadly.

Dozens of firework-related injuries occur in Nebraska each year around the Fourth of July.

“Fireworks can be the best part of the celebration, but they can cause serious injuries if used improperly,” said Dr. Joann Schaefer, the state’s Chief Medical Officer. “Have a safe and happy Fourth.”

For more great information about firework safety and about being safe all summer long, visit the National Safety Council.