Florida Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis urges Floridians to celebrate safely during upcoming New Year’s Eve celebrations. According to the National Fire Protection Association, fireworks cause an annual average of three deaths and cost $43 million in direct property damage.
“Since 2014, Florida firefighters have responded to more than 50 fireworks-related incidents accountingfor more than $1.5 million in property loss,” said CFO and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis. “It’s important to use precaution while celebrating on New Year’s Eve as fireworks can destroy property, cause serious burns and can pose a serious threat to the safety of our communitities. Leave the fireworks shows to the professionals so you can avoid becoming a part of these devastating statistics.”
Only approved sparklers and fireworks purchased for approved agricultural or industrial purposes are legal in Florida. Anyone who chooses to use fireworks or sparklers should follow these six safety tips.
- Only purchase sparklers from licensed vendors.
- Keep a fire extinguisher and water hose on hand, and a bucket of water available to fully extinquish used products.
- Never give fireworks to young children. Even sparklers can reach temperatures between 1,300 and 1,800 degrees, at least 200 degrees hotter than a standard butane lighter.
- Light only one item at a time and never attempt to re-light.
- Keep pets indoors and away from all fireworks.
- Never mix fireworks and alcohol. Attend public fireworks show instead. Public displays are sponsored by communities and organizations across Florida.
Floridians should not sign waivers to purchase fireworks that are illegal for personal use in Florida. Signing a waiver will not clear a consumer of responsibility if caught illegally using fireworks. Local law enforcement agencies are charged with the enforcement of Florida fireworks laws. To learn more about fireworks enforcement, click here.
For a complete list of Florida-approved sparklers your family can enjoy, click here.