Independence Day is one of America’s favorite holidays and we celebrate with barbecues, parades and fireworks displays. While it’s a fun time to celebrate and connect with family, people still end up in the emergency room.

How can you keep yourself and your loved ones safe this holiday?

  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and avoiding alcoholic beverages.
  • Stay in the shade.
  • Wear sunscreen.
  • Leave the fireworks to the professionals. In 2016, 4 people died and approximately 11,100 were injured from fireworks-related incidents, requiring medical treatment, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.


As GBCA’s Director of Safety Services, I encourage you to think more about safety this 4th of July holiday, and avoid the visit to your local ER.

We all want to be “the guy” in the neighborhood who’s fun and cool. That guy, however, often ends up hurting themselves or others because of their poor or impaired judgement.

I encourage everyone to consciously and actively avoid accidents.

  • For outdoor parties, provide shade and water.
  • Keep an eye on each other, particularly the young and elderly.
  • Go see a professional fireworks display instead of trying to do one yourself.

Don’t forget your pets!

  • Don’t bring your pets to a fireworks display, even a small one. They do not understand what’s happening, and may react by biting, fighting, or running away.
  • If fireworks are being used near your home, put your pet in a safe, interior room to avoid exposure to the sound.
  • Make sure your pet has an identification tag in case it runs away during a fireworks display.
  • Never shoot fireworks of any kind (consumer fireworks, sparklers, fountains, etc.) near pets


Wishing all a safe celebration! If you have any questions about safety, or would like additional tips, please contact GBCA Directory of Safety Services Frank Durso at fdurso@