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Firefighter group urging caution this July 4th holiday

npr.org

One group representing firefighters and emergency medical personnel is hoping people leave the fireworks this July 4th up to the professionals.

John D'Alessandro, spokesman with the Fireman's Association of the State of New York, or FASNY, says even sparklers can reach 1,000 degrees and cause 3rd degree burns.

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FASNY is urging common sense this holiday if people are going to use sparklers or ground-level fireworks – the legal fireworks in New York.

"Have a bucket of water nearby.  Dip the spent fireworks into the bucket. Do not ever just take them and throw them somewhere on the property, or worse yet, it the trash.   We've had instances where people have disposed of them in their trash cans and several hours later the fire department is getting a call because the building is on fire," he said.

D'Allesandro says parents should make sure children are fully supervised when using sparklers or ground based fireworks.

"Sparklers can burn a thousand degrees or more.  Easy to burn someone or catch someone's clothes on fire.  Just basic common sense.  Being fire safe is being fire smart," he said.

D'Alessandro adds his group and other fire service organizations were solidly against the legalization of any form of fireworks in New York State.

As for the pyrotechnics on July 4th?

"The basic advice from the fire service regarding fireworks is go to a professional fireworks show," he said.