San Diego, California - Unless you want to trade your independence for a jail cell or maybe even a hospital room, don’t buy and set off fireworks or light sparklers for the Fourth of July.
Let the pyrotechnical experts put on the fireworks show and enjoy it as a spectator.
Fireworks can cause burns, cuts, amputations, and blindness. They can also ignite brush in timber-dry conditions.
In San Diego County, it is illegal to possess and use all fireworks, or manufacture fireworks or other explosives, Sheriff’s Bomb/Arson Unit Sgt. Everard Dayrit said. That includes fireworks labeled "safe and sane."
Under California law, those convicted of possessing, importing or making fireworks can face fines of up to $50,000 and be sent to jail or prison for up to a year.
According to a 2013 Fireworks Annual report, 11,400 people were treated in hospitals across the United States for firework injuries, and eight people died. Sixty-five percent of the injuries came in a month-long period around the Fourth of July Six of the eight fatalities also occurred in this time frame. The report is compiled by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Children should be warned not to try to play with fireworks or even fireworks that appear to be leftover because they could still be active.
The Sheriff’s Department is also warning people not to set off paper or sky lanterns because there is no way to control where they might land, and the open flame could start a fire. Paper and sky lanterns are also illegal under the County of San Diego's fire code.