The Fourth of July usually means parades, cookouts, swimming and spending time with friends and family. But just because you are letting loose and enjoying the day off of work, you still need to be aware of your and your family's safety on the holiday.
1. Reminder: Burn restrictions are in effect in the City of Colorado Springs
The Colorado Springs Fire Department Fire Marshal’s burn restrictions are currently in effect to include:
- No recreational fires, bonfires, open or prescribed burns
- No smoking in ALL city parks and open spaces
Fireworks: Recreational fireworks are illegal in the City, which includes anything requiring ignition to include: sparklers, snakes, aerials, comets, flares, spinners, missiles, etc. Yes, even sparklers are illegal and prohibited!
The City of Colorado Springs has pockets of El Paso County property where there are fireworks stands to purchase fireworks, but they are illegal in the City. A fire started by fireworks that threatens or damages property is a crime of arson. Possession, use and/or the sale of fireworks is subject to a fine up to $2,500 and/or up to 189 days in jail. If you hear or witness the use of fireworks being used by a neighbor, call 719-444-7000.
Fireworks hospitalize more than 9,000 people each year and 50 percent of fireworks injuries are children under the age of 14. Head to a show and leave fireworks to the professionals!
2. Prevent drowning accidents and deaths
About 1 in 5 people who die from drowning are children 14 and younger. For every child who dies from drowning, another five receive ER care for nonfatal submersion injuries.
3. Wear sunscreen!
Look for a broad-spectrum sunscreen with UVA and UVB protection, water resistance and an SPF of 30-50. Re-apply regularly, wear lightweight, long-sleeved clothing, sunglasses and hat protection. According the Environmental Working Group, in 2015 more than twice as many American men died from melanoma as women.
4. Use alcohol responsibly
More beer is sold on July 4 than any other holiday: about 68 million cases! However, it is also the second worst day of the year (after Jan. 1) for fatal traffic accidents. Fifty-one percent of deadly car accidents are alcohol related. Designate a sober driver: A DUI could cost you up to $25,000 and your job.
5. Enjoy the BBQ but grill safely
- Always supervise a grill when in use
- Keep pets and children away from grills
- Keep the grill in the open away from houses, decks and tree branches.
- According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), 9,600 home grill fires were reported annually. The leading causes were a failure to clean the grill properly or using the grill too close to something that could burn.
Have fun and enjoy Independence Day safely with your family and friends!