PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As the Fourth of July approaches, local safety officials want people to be extra careful when it comes to fireworks. They can cause serious injury, and some officials prefer you leave the dazzling displays to the pros.
Families are loading up at Phantom Fireworks in Bucks County ahead of the Fourth of July. From the latest line of fireworks to sparklers, families want to celebrate with a bang.
“Fireworks and sparks going everywhere and all the things going up and exploding,” Adriana Rodriguez, of Atlantic County, said.
But each pop comes with the risk of injury. Officials say proper handling is critical.
“A lot of burns, a lot of hand injuries,” Bensalem Township Director of Public Safety Frederick Harran said.
Harran says approved fireworks are illegal in Pennsylvania within 150 feet of an occupied structure. He suggests using common sense and courtesy.
“You’re burning someone’s house down, causing aggravation to people in houses, hurting yourself, your family, your own property, is it worth a couple of minutes of seeing some colors in the air?” Harran said.
It’s also illegal to point fireworks toward a vehicle or use them while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Philadelphia’s police commissioner says violations will be taken seriously.
“Utilizing either commercial grade or illegal explosive devices such as M-series devices can lead to serious charges,” Danielle Outlaw said. “We’re talking felonies here, many of which will be prosecuted federally.”
To be extra cautious, ask before you buy, or simply leave it to the professionals and enjoy one of the regional shows. You can find a list of shows in the Philadelphia region by clicking here.