By Cobb Police
The Fourth of July weekend is just around the corner, and I'm sure many of you are already making plans to celebrate with friends and family.
If your plans include a fireworks display, it is always recommended that you attend one of the many licensed venues around metro Atlanta. If you plan to celebrate with fireworks at home, please review the legal requirements and safety tips listed below.
Georgia law permits use of the following by unlicensed individuals:
- Wire or wood sparklers of not more than 100 grams of mixture per item
- Other sparkling items which are non-explosive and non-aerial and contain 75 grams or less of chemical compound per tube or a total of 200 grams or less for multiple tubes
- Snake and glow worms; trick noise makers, including paper streamers, party poppers, string poppers, and snappers; and drop pops each consisting of 0.25 grains or less of explosive mixture
Standard safety practices as recommended by the U. S. Fire Administration and other related organizations include the following:
- Do not let young children play with sparklers. These can reach temperatures as high as 1200 degrees and cause third degree burns. Older children should be closely supervised.
- Light fireworks outdoors in a clear area away from houses, dry leaves or grass, and flammable materials, and hose down the area before you begin.
- Keep a bucket of water or hose nearby for emergencies and to pour on fireworks that do not ignite. Be sure to water down spent fireworks before placing them in the trash.
- Never have any portion of your body directly over a firework while lighting and keep hair pulled back.
- Never ignite fireworks in a container especially glass or metal.
- Avoid excessive alcohol consumption when handling fireworks.
If you plan to celebrate at the lake and you have young children, I would encourage you to make them wear a flotation device anytime they are in or near the water.
It is easy for parents to become distracted when spending time with friends and family and even more so when adult beverages are being enjoyed. A young child can step off the shore and disappear under the murky water in mere seconds.
What You and Your Neighbors Can Do
Many families are on vacation this time of year, making it especially important to remember the basics of crime prevention.
A security system with an audible alarm is a great deterrent to have. Be sure to set the alarm every time you leave the house.
Make sure that your alarm service signs and window decals are visible from the street and replace them when they start to show age. Confirm with the alarm company that they have the correct address and contact numbers.
Keep windows, doors and garage doors closed and locked when you are away. Leave an interior light on or purchase a timer and purchase a timer for your exterior lighting as well. Ask a neighbor to pick up the mail and keep an eye on your residence.
Refrain from posting vacation pictures on social media sites while you are away. Teenagers have a lot of "friends" on their sites that do not need to know that your home will be unoccupied for an extended period of time.
Check out more cool summer information in our Patch Summer Guide.