Firework Safety - KULR-8 Television, Billings, MT

Firework Safety

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While many rush to the grocery store getting last minute preparations for their 4th of July BBQ, others rush to firework vendors as they prepare to illuminate the sky.

As Billings Clinic's Emergency Doctor Sara Nyquist says, buying from professional vendors is better than trying to make them yourself. Homemade or not, firecrackers are dangerous.

The fireworks show on 4th of July is one kids and families remember every year. The light show is a 4th of July pastime, and a way to celebrate America's independence.

"Even though it's fun and everyone is excited to do it, really an injury would be tragic. Especially in a child," says Nyquist.

Nyquist says every year they get a handful of patients because of accidents with fireworks, and nearly all are from homemade versions. But she says you still need to take precautions even with ones you buy from vendors.

Nyquist suggest the firework operator be sober in order to stay right -minded and not have a slow response time. Stay close to a water source in case of a fire, and only light one firework at a time. Talk to the fireworks vendor about safe distances to light fireworks from a crowd, and how far you should stay away after lighting them. Keep children a far distance away, and always wear eye protection.

"An eye injury is very common with fireworks and it's very toxic. That type of injury can cause an alkaline burn that we just, even with all of our technology, we can't fix with surgery so you can have permanent damage," says Nyquist.

And just because you may love fireworks, doesn't mean you pet does. The loud noises cause a lot of stress for dogs and cats, so it's best to leave them at home and make them comfortable.

"If they are dogs and cats that get nervous with loud noises, putting them in a darkened area like the basement, pull the shades, put some music or the TV on to help drown the noise," says Dell Kay Bertino, a Veterinarian at Shiloh Veterinary Hospital.

As a reminder, fireworks are illegal in the Billings city limits. If you want to forgo lighting fireworks yourself, you can catch the Laurel and Heights firework shows which both start at dark.