Firework displays are often a big part of a July 4th celebration. However, Sheriff Jay Russell and Deputies of the Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office would like to remind everyone that if they are not used safely, fireworks can be very dangerous, causing serious burns or eye injuries.
Keep these safety tips in mind when celebrating Independence Day if fireworks are involved:
- Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.
• Avoid buying fireworks that are packaged in brown paper because this is often a sign that the fireworks were made for professional displays and that they could pose a danger to consumers.
• Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities. Parents don’t realize that young children suffer injuries from sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees – hot enough to melt some metals.
• Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.
• Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
• Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
• Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap.
• Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.
• Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
• After fireworks complete their burning, douse the spent device with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding it to prevent a trash fire.
Parish Ordinance 15-15. Discharge of Fireworks
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(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to discharge, use, or ignite fireworks as defined under LSA-R.S. 51:650, et seq. between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. except on December 31 and January 1 of each year. On December 31, the hours of prohibition shall be midnight to 8:00 a.m. On January 1, the hours of prohibition shall be 1:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. to midnight.
(b) Any person or persons who violate the provisions of this section shall be subject to a fine not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100.00), or imprisoned for a term in the parish jail not to exceed ten (10) days or both.
Sheriff Russell and Deputies wish everyone a Safe and Happy Fourth of July!