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Fireworks Safety Tips

Home & Community Safety

Canada Safety Council believes that the safest way to enjoy fireworks is to attend an exhibition show handled by professionals. There might be an event hosted by your community, overseen by a trained, certified professional. If you choose to hold a family show with “common fireworks” sold to consumers, remember that injuries almost always result from improper handling and a disregard to safety.

Canada Safety Council would like to share some safety tips, from purchasing and setting up, to the show itself and proper disposal. Regulation alone cannot protect the public. It must be combined with personal responsibility and awareness.

Purchasing Fireworks:

  • Follow the federal and local laws and regulations regarding safe use.
  • Purchase from a reliable source that sells products meeting safety standards.
  • Stay away from illegal explosives or firecrackers and do not improvise and make your own.

Setting Up:

  • Read the instructions. This is worth repeating: read the instructions, cautions and warnings on each firework item.
  • Store unused units in a closed box away from the unit being lit and do not smoke around them.
  • Set up outdoors in a clear, open space. Light fireworks on a hard, flat and level surface to insure stability.
  • Check the wind and have the wind blowing away from the spectators.
  • Spectators should be at least the safety distance written on the fireworks label away from the display, keeping special supervision on children.
  • Have a bucket of sand, supply of water and a working fire extinguisher on hand.

Fireworks Show:

  • Only adults (18 years or over) should handle the fireworks. If you are impaired (alcohol or drugs) do not handle them.
  • Light only one item at a time.
  • Wear protective eye glasses and gloves. Light at arm’s length and then stand back.
  • Never lean over the fireworks and keep hair and clothes away from fire sources.
  • Never attempt to re-light a “dud” or defective unit.
  • Never hold a lighted firework item in your hand.

Proper Disposal of Fireworks:

  • Sparklers should be immersed in a bucket of sand to cool down after burning out, as they remain very hot for some time.
  • Fireworks should be disposed of safely and properly.

Canada Safety Council knows that fireworks are popular, impressive and fun. Know the safety rules and respect the firepower.