UNITED STATES—Well in case you’re in the dark, the Fourth of July is next week. It happens to fall on a Thursday of all days which is a bit odd, because that rarely happens America, and I mean rarely. So that means in the next week you can plan to start to hear plenty of fireworks. They can be a good or bad thing depending on your age.

I think older generations hate fireworks because the noise is extensive and continuous. Some teens, young adults and older adults can emit fireworks for hours on end and never get tired of doing it. As a kid, I recall on the Fourth of July we would light fireworks until maybe two to three in the morning. Was it smart to do? Now that I reflect on things, the answer is no. I wasn’t thinking about my neighbors or those who had to get up and go to work the next day.

As kids we were just thinking about the loudest fireworks and the amazing colors or dazzling affects you get with some. I recalled playing with sparklers as a kid, only to realize, these damn things are dangerous as hell and they get excessively hot, so I am almost against allowing little ones to hold them as we did as kids. Perhaps the adults should showcase the fun because if that sparkler touches the arm, hand or leg, trust me you are going to get a burn and it could be quite severe; so, proceed with caution.

With that said, I’ve gotten to a point where I think it is important to leave the fireworks to the professionals. Go to the actual firework show in your local city that way you’re not putting yourself or anyone else in danger as you try to deliver fireworks. Those citywide firework shows tend to be grand in nature, you get to mingle with neighbors and the community, and they are safe. The kids love it, the adults love it. Also, you don’t have to worry about fireworks falling on the roof, a car or something else that could cause a massive fire. Yes, it happens.

However, this is an important conversation to have. Fireworks can be dangerous. It is not wise for kids to be lighting ANY SORT OF FIREWORK. The heat can cause serious burns and with some fireworks that can cause an eye to be lost or a finger or fingers to be lost because of the impact of the explosion.

Adults have to indeed step in and ensure the safety of the kids and those who are watching or in attendance. At the end of the day, the goal is to be as safe as possible because you don’t know how some of those fireworks may respond. Sometimes you get duds and people don’t realize it’s not an actual dud it is just a slight day. So have water nearby, perhaps even a fire extinguisher close by if you need it. Be advised there are parts of the country where certain cities prohibit fireworks so don’t get in trouble with the law doing things that you should NOT be doing.

If you are lighting fireworks, be aware of those with sensory issues including young children and pets. There are animals that are just petrified of fireworks, and it gives them the absolute jitters hearing that noise for hours on end. Be considerate of those who might be heading to work in the wee hours of the morning or the following day. You might have the whole weekend off after the holiday, but there might be plenty who are not that lucky. Have fun but remember to be safe.

Written By Jason Jones