By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

With drought conditions, bone dry vegetation and over 40 million Americans expected to hit the road this year over the 4th of July weekend, I wanted to get this message out early to start planning for a safe 4th of July!

“With warm weather and family events, the Fourth of July can be a fun time with great memories. But before you and your family celebrate, make sure everyone knows about 4th of July safety,” says Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

If not handled properly, fireworks, barbeques and heat can be dangerous and cause injuries to kids and adults. The best advice: “Attend public fireworks displays and leave the lighting to the professionals,” says Chief DiGiovanna.” These are tough economic times. As my dad would always say “why watch your money go up in smoke lighting off fireworks?” Save your money for important things!


Barbeque Safety: Keep grills away from anything that can burn, such as your house, car, or dry vegetation. Don’t leave the grill unattended while it’s cooking. Keep children and pets away from the grill. For charcoal grills, only use starter fluid designed for grills; NEVER USE GASOLINE. Do not add lighter fluid to an already lit fire. Before using a gas grill, check the connection between the propane tank and the fuel. Make sure coals are completely extinguished and cold before disposing of them. Never wear loose clothing when cooking. Never Barbeque indoors.

Fireworks Safety: First and foremost, make sure fireworks are legal in your community. Check with your local fire department. Always read directions. Use outdoors only. Do not use near grass or other flammable materials. Light one at a time. Spectators need to keep a safe distance. Never point or throw fireworks at people or objects. Always have a bucket of water or a fire extinguisher nearby. Never attempt to re-light or fix fireworks Stand several feet away from lit fireworks. When disposing of used fireworks, soak in a bucket or trash can of water overnight away from the house or garage. A responsible adult should be in charge of the activities. Never use fireworks while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Water, Camping, Hiking or Biking: Never swim alone or leave children in the pool unattended. Always let someone know “when – where and what time” your activities will take place. In the event you are missing, we will know where to start looking!

Weather: The chances are it will be warm outside: Don’t get dehydrated – consume lots of water. Make sure your pets have lots of water. When outdoors, stay in the shade as much as possible – avoid the direct sun. Avoid severe sun burn by applying sun block. Wear appropriate clothing.

For additional 4th of July Safety information contact your local fire department.

Be Safe and Happy 4th of July!