How Michiganders can celebrate Independence Day safely

Sparklers alone caused 1,100 serious injuries in 2021
How Michiganders can celebrate Independence Day safely
Published: Jun. 29, 2022 at 10:36 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 30, 2022 at 12:13 AM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - As Independence Day Weekend approaches, the skies are lighting up with fireworks, but this beautiful tradition can turn ugly fast.

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More than 11,000 people were treated for firework-related injuries in 2021. Most firework-related injuries and deaths happen during the days leading up to the Fourth of July. In recent years, there’s been a spike in injuries, but it is possible to use them safely.

“There’s always big parties people laughing and enjoying themselves and then you have this big show that everybody gets excited about,” said Antonio Muniz, owner of T Bombs Firework.

There’s something about Independence Day fireworks that make Muniz happy. He can’t remember when his passions started, but he remembers how.

“I always figured sooner or later I would end up working at a fireworks store or selling my own fireworks,” Muniz said.

So when he got the chance to open his store -- located at 2524 S. Cedar Street in Lansing -- he took it. It’s not always fun and games -- Muniz said fireworks are serious business.

“Fireworks are safe if you use them safely,” Muniz said. “It’s the people that go and alter the fireworks or use them in an unsafe way.”

Here’s how the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said people can celebrate safely:

  • Keep water buckets or a hose nearby.
  • Never relight fireworks that didn’t work the first time.
  • Light fireworks one at a time and move back quickly.
  • Never light fireworks under the influence.
  • Never let children play or light their own fireworks -- including sparklers.
  • Never point or throw fireworks at anyone.
  • Never place any part of your body directly over a firework when lighting the fuse.

Muniz said breaking these rules only ruins it for those who are following them.

“It just takes so many people to get hurt or a loss of life, and then it can be ruined for everyone,” Muniz said.

Even the smallest firework can result in injury. Sparklers alone caused 1,100 serious injuries in 2021. More safety tips can be found on the official U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission website here.


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