What you need to know about fireworks safety in Harris County this 4th of July

East Valley residents can choose from any number of Fourth of July events.

East Valley residents can choose from any number of Fourth of July events.

The Harris County Fire Marshal's Office is urging caution and safety for residents as Independence Day approaches. County officials said residents should attend public fireworks displays rather than hold their own.

Although fireworks stands and stores are a frequent sight in the county, residents must check with their local authority having jurisdiction—such as homeowners associations—which may have specific fireworks rules for the community, HCFMO Public Information Officer Rachel Moreno said.

“We encourage citizens to attend public, professional, fireworks displays and leave the lighting to the professionals,” Moreno said. “If you choose to use fireworks, please do so responsibly. Follow all manufacturer's directions, do not consume alcohol, keep a bucket of water close by and do not discard fireworks into trash cans until completely cooled—preferably soaked in water overnight."

The HCFMO inspects about 500 fireworks stands and stores each fireworks sales season, Moreno said.

Citizens are encouraged to report any fire hazard by visiting www.hcfmo.net, calling 281-999-2200 or emailing fmosupport@fmo.hctx.net.

Harris County constables are also alert to the dangers that fireworks and impaired drivers present on the holiday weekend.

Harris County Precinct 4 Constable Mark Herman said his office will have DWI patrols looking for impaired drivers on July 4, and he recommends residents designate a driver, call a cab or stay in place if they are inebriated.

Herman said firecrackers, bottle rockets and sparklers are the most common causes of injuries during fireworks season, and hands and fingers are the areas most commonly injured in the U.S., according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.

By Vanessa Holt
A resident of the Houston area since 2011, Vanessa began working in community journalism in her home state of New Jersey in 1996. She joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2016 as a reporter for the Spring/Klein edition and became editor of that paper in March 2017 and editor of The Woodlands edition in January 2019.


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