Fireworks during the Fourth of July are as American as apple-pie, but did you know that 2 out of 5 fires reported on that day are started by fireworks, more than for any other cause? Every Independence Day holiday, thousands of people, most often children and teens, are injured while using consumer fireworks. Despite the dangers of fireworks, few people understand the associated risks which include devastating burns, injuries to the eyes, hands and face, fires and even death.
According to the latest national data from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 12,900 people for fireworks related injuries; 54% of those injuries were to the extremities and 36% were to the head. Children younger than 15 years of age accounted for more than one-third (36%) of the estimated injuries.
In Michigan, consumer fireworks became legal January 1, 2012, and must meet CPSC standards. They will only be sold to people 18 years of age or older. Low impact fireworks (ground-based items such as sparklers, toy snakes, snaps, and poppers) are legal for sale and use. In December, 2018, new measures were signed into law (House Bill 5939) that reduce the number of days fireworks can be used, give local government more power to regulate the devices and tighten consumer sales and use.
“The best way to stay safe from fireworks is to not use them. Instead, watch a public fireworks display either in person or on television put on by trained experts,” said Firefighter Michael McLeieer, President of the non-profit fire safety charity E.S.C.A.P.E. “Fireworks are dangerous to people and pets. Using them puts you and your property at risk,” according to McLeieer.
You can enjoy your holiday and the fireworks by following a few simple safety tips:
Be safe. If you want to see fireworks, watch a public show put on by the professionals
Parents and caregivers should always closely supervise children at events where fireworks are used
Hand-held sparklers burn at more than 1,200 °F and cause 3rd degree burns in seconds. As a comparison, wood burns at 575 degrees F
If you decide to use sparklers, place discarded sparkler wires in a metal bucket filled with water
Sparklers account for roughly one-quarter (25%) of emergency room fireworks injuries
After the fireworks display, children should never pick up fireworks that may be left over since they may still be active
Adults should not consume alcohol when using fireworks
Leave pets at home and keep them inside during fireworks displays
Follow the local ordinance and state law regarding the use of consumer fireworks
E.S.C.A.P.E. Fire Safety urges Michiganders to use common sense, be aware of your surroundings and follow safety rules this Fourth of July during holiday celebrations!
It’s #FirePreventionWeek! This year’s theme is Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety! ™ E.S.C.A.P.E. Inc. president and founder firefighter Michael McLeieer talks to Ken Lanphear on the WKZO AM 590 and FM 106.9 Morning Show about this year’s theme and steps you and your family can take to prevent a home fire and stay safe.
Here is a link to the live interview on Monday October 4, 2021 at 6:50 a.m.:
The next stop of the day was in Grand Rapids on eightWest at WOOD TV 8 at the downtown Media Art Center Studio inside the Grand Rapids Art Museum at Rosa Park Circle.
Plan, practice and pick a place, 3 very important things that can save lives in the event of a fire. This is fire prevention month and today eightWest has Michael McLeieer with E.S.C.A.P.E. Fire Safety and the President of the Michigan Association of Fire Chiefs, Dave Glotzbach in studio with us.
Plan and Practice your escape
Pick a meeting place once outside
Call 911 from a neighbor’s house or your cell phone
When was the last time you checked your smoke alarm? Since January 1st, Michigan has experienced 25 fire fatalities and remains a leading state for home fire deaths. These deaths have occurred in homes that did not have working smoke alarms. E.S.C.A.P.E. Fire Safety reminds you that properly installed and maintained smoke alarms on every level of your home are the only mitigation devices that can alert you and your family to a fire 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Whether you’re awake or asleep, a working smoke alarm is constantly on alert, scanning the air for fire and smoke.
Take the opportunity when you move the clocks forward one hour at 2 a.m. on Sunday March 11th, to make sure you test your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and replace the batteries as needed. Also replace alarms that are over 10 years old.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, almost two-thirds of home fire deaths resulted from fires in properties without working smoke alarms. A working smoke alarm significantly increases your chances of surviving a deadly home fire.
There are many different brands of smoke alarms available on the market, but they fall under two basic types: ionization and photoelectric.
It cannot be stated definitively that one is better than the other in every fire situation that could arise in a residence. Because both ionization and photoelectric smoke alarms are better at detecting distinctly different, yet potentially fatal fires, and because no one can predict what type of fire might start in a home, the United States Fire Administration recommends that every residence and place where people sleep be equipped with:
Both ionization AND photoelectric smoke alarms, OR
dual sensor smoke alarms, which contain both ionization and photoelectric smoke sensors
In addition to the basic types of alarms, there are alarms made to meet the needs of people with hearing disabilities. These alarms may use strobe lights that flash and/or vibrate to assist in alerting those who are unable to hear standard smoke alarms when they sound.
Smoke alarms are powered by a battery or they are hardwired into the home’s electrical system. If the smoke alarm is powered by battery, it runs on either a disposable 9-volt battery or a non-replaceable 10-year lithium (“long-life”) battery. A backup battery is usually present on hardwired alarms and may need to be replaced.
These batteries must be tested on a regular basis and, in most cases, should be replaced at least once each year (except for lithium batteries).
Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including the basement. Many fatal fires begin late at night or early in the morning, so the U.S. Fire Administration recommends installing smoke alarms both inside and outside of sleeping areas.
Since smoke and many deadly gases rise, installing your smoke alarms at the proper level will provide you with the earliest warning possible. Always follow the manufacturer’s installation instructions.
Smoke alarms are not expensive and are worth the lives they can help save. Ionization and photoelectric smoke alarms cost between $6 and $20. Dual sensor smoke alarms cost between $24 and $40.
Some fire departments offer reduced price, or even free, smoke alarms and may install battery operated smoke alarms in your home at no cost. Contact your local fire department’s non-emergency phone number for more information or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more details on a smoke alarm installation program close to Where You Live!
For 20 years now, Michael McLeieer of E.S.C.A.P.E. Inc.has been teaching children and adults about fire prevention. Now his work and dedication has earned him a national award, the 2016 Fire Prevention and Education Award.
The award, sponsored by Nest, was established in memory of volunteer firefighter and NVFC board member Marc Mueller. Each year, it honors a person who has made a major contribution in the field of fire prevention.
McLeieer founded E.S.C.A.P.E. more than 20 years ago to teach children and adults about fire prevention, CPR, and first aid. He is a regular at Maranda Park Partiesevery summer, spreading his message of fire safety to more than a million children in West Michigan.
Lt. McLeieer will be recognized at a banquet on May 6, 2016, in Alexandria, Virginia. To read more about his accomplishments and the award, click here.
October 4 through 10 is Fire Prevention Week. This year’s fire prevention theme is “Hear the BEEP where you SLEEP! Every bedroom needs a working smoke alarm.” Michigan has seen a dramatic increase in home fires resulting in injury and death. This listing provides numerous opportunities for children and families to learn about fire safety, injury prevention, and smoke alarm maintenance close to Where You Live. If you have questions about fire prevention and safety or need a smoke alarm, e-mail email@example.com.
ESCAPE Inc. is celebrating 20 years in West Michigan! See the ESCAPE smoke demonstration trailer and Jake the Fire Safety Dogat Zoo Goes Boo at John Ball Zoo on Saturday, October 17. There will be experts to answer questions and free fire prevention materials between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.