July 4th Weekend: Fireworks in Florida

Two years ago, NFL players C.J. Wilson from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Jason Pierre-Paul from the New York Giants drew the nation’s attention to the dangers of fireworks.  In two separate accidents over the same July 4th weekend, these famed NFL players suffered significant injuries to their fingers, requiring both to have fingers amputated.

The fact that these two players have celebrity status helped expose the dangers of fireworks.  Each year, hundreds of Americans are injured and some are even killed while lighting fireworks during the holiday weekend.

It can certainly be exciting to light fireworks in your own backyard, but for safety reasons, we encourage friends and family to leave the fireworks operations to the professionals and either attend one of the thousands of professionally-operated July 4th celebrations in cities throughout the United States or cozy up with your loved ones and watch it from home on a large screen TV.  Either way, you’ll enjoy the holiday with loved ones — and stay safe.

If you or a friend finds fireworks on the 4th of July irresistible, then you should first find out if fireworks are legal in your state – many states have outlawed fireworks.

In the state of Florida, individuals without special permits are only allowed to use the types of fireworks that are categorized as “sparklers.”  These include sparklers, fountains, glow worms, and snakes.

It’s true that retail stores in Florida may sell fireworks beyond the category of “sparklers.”  While you are permitted to buy them in the state, you aren’t permitted to use them unless you have a special permit or are using them for special purposes on a farm or fish hatchery.  If you are caught with illegal fireworks and don’t possess a permit, you can be arrested, fined up to $1,000, or required to spend up to 1 year behind bars.

While we discourage the use of fireworks at home, if your friends or family insist on using fireworks, please follow these general safety measures:

  • Store fireworks in a dry, cool location that is inaccessible to children or pets
  • Never allow small children to handle or be close to fireworks
  • Read and follow instructions on packaging
  • Maintain a large bucket of water and a fire extinguisher at the site when lighting any fireworks
  • Avoid igniting fireworks in or near glass or metal
  • Wear eye protection; never put fireworks in a clothing pocket
  • Do not relight a firework that has malfunctioned
  • Light fireworks one at a time in a clear, outdoor location
  • Do not aim, point, or throw fireworks toward any people, animals, vehicles or structures

As you make your plans for the holiday weekend, please keep in mind that the safest way to enjoy fireworks is watching a show operated by professionals.  However you decide to spend the weekend, stay safe while having fun and celebrating the reason behind the holiday — the independence of the United States of America.
Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.