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Tips for Celebrating Safely During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic put a pause on public fireworks displays this year, but the Madison Fire Department reminds the public not to take a “do it yourself” approach to the Fourth of July.

Fireworks pose a dangerous risk, from accidental fires to serious injury, for people who use them. In 2018, fireworks started an estimated 19,500 fires, including nearly 2,000 structure fires, and sent an estimated 9,100 people to emergency rooms. Half of those fireworks-related injuries were to the extremities and 34% were to the eye or other parts of the head*.

Until we can enjoy professional fireworks shows again, the public is encouraged to find other ways to commemorate the Fourth of July.

What’s legal in the City of Madison, Town of Blooming Grove, and Village of Shorewood Hills?
Sparklers, snakes, snaps, caps, and party poppers are legal but are to be used with caution. Only light these products on or near non-combustible surfaces like concrete. Dispose of them in a bucket of water, and make sure they are completely cool before throwing them in the trash.

Remember that these items still present fire and burn hazards. For example, sparklers burn at a temperature of more than 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit—hot enough to cause third-degree burns.

Tips from our partners at Public Health Madison & Dane County
COVID-19 is still spreading in our community. Celebrate the Fourth of July with members of your household to minimize your risk of exposure to the virus.

If you choose to celebrate with others who are not part of your household, consider only going to outdoor gatherings where there is good air flow and it is possible to stay at least six feet away from people you don’t live with. Remember to avoid sharing food, drinks, and dishes, and keep groups small and contained. Wear a cloth face covering over your nose and mouth when you are unable to physically distance. Be sure to carry hand sanitizer with you and use it often. Wash your hands thoroughly when you return home.

Get more recommendation on the Public Health Madison & Dane County website.

*These injury estimates were obtained or derived from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s 2018 Fireworks Annual Report.