Fireworks season opens, brings safety warnings

Fireworks season opens, brings safety warnings

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by Justin Corr

Bio | Email | Follow: @JCorrKTVB

KTVB.COM

Posted on June 23, 2013 at 5:43 PM

Updated Thursday, Jan 9 at 12:44 PM

BOISE -- Fireworks season starts Monday. That's when Boise fireworks stands will be able to open and start selling.

Fireworks are one of the mainstays of Independence Day. But, for EMTs and firefighters, 3rd-degree burns and brush fires are also a mainstay. But, they don't have to be, if you just use common sense.

Boise Fire's Deputy Chief Fire Marshal Romeo Gervais has some tips to make the holiday season safer for you and your family. "There's two different types of fireworks here in Idaho. There's safe and sane, which is legal... And then, there's the other kind, which is more dangerous."

Gervais says anything that explodes or leaves the ground is considered 'dangerous.' "Anything like that is not legal for use or possession in the state."

He says, besides being illegal, those fireworks are more likely to injure people, and start fires in what is already shaping up to be a busy fire season. "We're kind of in an average fire season right now, which isn't good necessarily. Average for Idaho is a pretty robust season."

Altering or misusing fireworks is also illegal. But, Gervais says even legal fireworks can be dangerous, if people just aren't prepared to literally play with fire. "Sparklers burn extremely hot, and we have burn injuries from sparklers every year. We have fires from legal fireworks every year."

So, firefighters recommend common sense. They say to light fireworks on a clear flat area far from bushes or trees, have a hose or bucket of water nearby, use adult supervision, and dowse your fireworks or let them cool overnight, so they don't start trash fires.

"Even with safe and sane fireworks, they do have a risk involved, and you need to be smart about using them," said Gervais.

Fireworks are completely prohibited in the foothills by Boise.

While 'dangerous' fireworks are illegal to possess and use in Idaho, they're legal to buy or sell in Idaho. That's why anyone buying those fireworks must sign a document stating they will transport and use those outside the state.

Fines for illegal fireworks can be as much as $300. Also, if a firework or ember from your fireworks starts a fire on someone else's property, you are liable for that damage.

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