The Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services (HCDFRS) and the Howard County Police Department (HCPD) urge residents and businesses to keep their July 4th celebrations safe this holiday weekend.
“While we all look forward to celebrating our nation’s independence with family and friends on the Fourth of July, it’s important to do so safely," said Howard County Executive Calvin Ball. "I encourage all of our residents to join us at the Downtown Columbia Lakefront on Monday. It’s a spectacular festival and unifying community event and allows everyone to safely enjoy a thrilling firework show. If you are planning to celebrate this weekend, I encourage our community to follow the advice of our Police and Fire Departments when it comes to fireworks."
In Howard County, the sale, possession, and residential use of ground-based sparklers is prohibited. Violators are subject to a fine of up to $1,000. While devices known as party poppers, ignitable snakes, snap ’n pops, and handheld sparklers are legal, they can be dangerous. Handheld sparkers can reach 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit, which can cause significant injuries.
During 2020, there were approximately 10,300 firework related injuries during the one-month period surrounding Independence Day, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
Those who do purchase legal fireworks should follow these safety tips from the CPSC:
- After a display, never pick up fireworks that may be left over, as they may still be active and/or hot to the touch.
- Douse used fireworks with a significant amount of water and leave them for several hours.
- Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
- Never try to re-light fireworks that have not fully functioned.
- Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose nearby in case of fire.
- Adults should always supervise fireworks activities and never let children handle fireworks.
- Be sure other people are out of range before lighting fireworks.
Please stay safe and leave fireworks to the professionals this Fourth of July. Click here for more information about the fireworks at the Lakefront in Columbia. HCPD will be in attendance to ensure crowd safety.