PANAMA CITY Fla. (WMBB) — We are only a few days away until the Fourth of July and for many celebrating the holiday, that means lighting off fireworks.
“We are getting up to 12,000 degrees that is easily enough to cause 30-degree burns,” said Panama City Fire Department Division Chief Graham Tolbert.
Tolbert used a temperature reader on consumer sparklers, to see how hot they can get.
“If you choose to use consumer fireworks, you need to make some preparations,” said Tolbert. “You need to choose an area that’s clear of dry brush and debris and other things that might catch on fire. We need to have some precautions and some extinguishers.”
After using fireworks, Tolbert said to make sure that you let them sit for 20 minutes and then put your fireworks in a bucket of water to make sure that no fires can start.
“When lighting fireworks, never stand over the fireworks, never throw them and never point them at anyone,” he said.
Fireworks Factory owner Sabrina Stomp and her niece Ana Marie Hanson have owned their shop for 14 years. They also warn their customers about the dangers of fireworks.
“Different ways to secure it and if you are going to have crowds and putting on a show, just different things to put in place to make sure that nothing goes on, and if it does you’ve got barriers,” said Stomp.
Already this year, the Fireworks Factory has seen an overwhelming amount of customers.
“We have people walking out with boxes upon boxes, a couple thousand, and then we have people that come in for just sparklers,” said Hanson.
If you do find yourself in an emergency situation after lighting fireworks, Tolbert said to call 911 immediately.
“Putting cold rags on the area until the fire department, EMS, and first responders can get there, will help,” said Tolbert.
If you do not want to set off your own fireworks, Panama City is hosting a display at the marina on the Fourth of July at 9:30 p.m.