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DuPage County Sheriff

James Mendrick


Contact Information: Domrose #563 ~ 630.407.2010

Monday, June 30, 2014

Sheriff Reminds Residents to “Keep it Safe”

 Sheriff John E. Zaruba is reminding DuPage County residents of not only the dangers of illegal fireworks but also the dangers of legal novelty fireworks. 

“This year we celebrate our country’s 238th birthday and it is a time for friends and family, to enjoy food, games and to celebrate. Fireworks have always been at the very center of holiday fun, but the celebration can quickly turn to tragedy when someone chooses to risk everything by using illegal fireworks,” Sheriff Zaruba said. 

“Pay special attention to your surroundings as sparks can ignite the ground, potentially causing damage to people and property,” Sheriff Zaruba added. “If you chose to use any legal novelty fireworks, be sure there is adult supervision and a water source nearby if needed. A reminder every year emergency rooms treat thousands of people for injuries in fireworks related incidents.  Over thirty percent of those injuries involved the use of illegal or homemade devices,” he continued. 

“I cannot stress enough the hazards people risk when they use illegal fireworks, even legal novelty fireworks can be dangerous, if not handled properly” Sheriff Zaruba continued. “I ask you to read all cautions and warnings before you use a legal novelty firework. Another way to protect your family is to forego any legal novelty fireworks at home and attend a public fireworks display, leaving the lighting to the professionals, so that everyone can enjoy a safe 4th of July,” Sheriff Zaruba said. 

The National Council on Fireworks Safety and the Consumer Product Safety Commission to provides the following tips for safe handling of legal novelty fireworks; 

  • Read and follow all warnings and instructions.  
  • Use legal novelty fireworks outdoors only. 
  • Use common sense, and make sure there is a responsible adult. Responsible means someone who has not been drinking alcohol.  
  • Only use the legal novelty fireworks as intended. Do not try to alter or combine them. 
  • Do not hold sparklers, or run around with them. Instead, put them in the ground. 
  • Do not put any type of fireworks or flammables near children. Sparklers can get as hot as 2,000 degrees.  
  • Be sure other people (especially children) and pets are out of range before lighting legal novelty fireworks.  
  • Only light legal novelty fireworks in a cool place, on a smooth, flat surface away from the house, dry leaves and flammable materials.  
  • Never carry legal novelty fireworks in your pocket. 
  • Never relight legal novelty fireworks that have not fully functioned or light one that looks defective.  
  • Keep a bucket of water handy, and soak used legal novelty fireworks for at least 10 minutes after igniting.  

All fireworks are illegal in Illinois, except those designated as legal novelty works. Those who disregard these laws face jail time and considerable fines.