WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Not all Fourth of July celebrations are safe ones.
According to a new study released Tuesday by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 65 percent of all firework injuries occurred in the days surrounding Independence Day. Approximately 9,600 injuries were accounted for as well as 4 deaths.
"For thousands of consumers, last year's Fourth of July celebration ended with a visit to the emergency room," said CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum. "CPSC wants you to understand the risks with legal and illegal fireworks, in order to prevent an injury, or worse, during this holiday."
Tuesday, Chairman Tenenbaum led the agency's annual fireworks press event, including a live demonstration of the dangers associated with fireworks. Mannequins and watermelons were use show the explosive force of homemade and professional-grade fireworks.
The CPSC recommends the following to consumers who purchase legal fireworks:
* Supervise young children with sparklers. Sparklers burn at a temperature of about 2,000 degrees, hot enough to melt some metals.
* Avoid buying fireworks that are packaged in brown paper because this is often a sign that the fireworks were made for professional displays, which could pose a danger to consumers.
* Never try to relight or handle malfunctioning fireworks. Soak them in water and throw them away.
* Never shoot fireworks off in metal or glass containers.
For more firework safety advice, please visit http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml12/12203.html.