Fredericksburg City Beat

This blog includes news about City Hall, city schools and other 22401 news.

Pamela Gould reports on City Hall. You can reach her at 540-735-1972 or Robyn Sidersky reports on city schools. You can reach her at 540-374-5413 or

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How to not get burned this Fourth of July and other safety tips

The Fredericksburg Fire Department sent us fireworks safety tips to keep in mind when  celebrating the Fourth of July tomorrow. Thanks to Deputy Fire Chief Mike Jones.

First, some stats on people who weren’t so careful:

  • In 2010, the National Fire Protection Association estimated there were 15,500 fires caused by fireworks in the United States.
  • Of those, 1,100 were structure fires, 300 were vehicle fires and 14,100 were deemed as outside or other fires.
  • Property damage from these fires resulted in a loss of $36 million.
  • Along with the fires and cost of damage, emergency rooms treated an estimated 8,600 people for fireworks related injuries and eight deaths.
  • Sparklers caused 27 percent of those fireworks injuries. Sparklers can reach temperatures of over 1,200 degrees. In comparison, glass will melt at 900 degrees.
Here are tips to avoid what happened to the people above:
  • Set up a display area and explain to all young children to stay out of this area.
  • Set your display area up in a parking lot, driveway, gravel or dirt area.
  • Make sure sparks or embers are not falling on your and your neighbor’s lawn or mulch.
  • Keep your supply of fireworks out of your display area.
  • Use a lighter with a long handle; avoid pocket size lighters or matches.
  • Eye protection is an excellent idea.
  • Light only one firework at a time.
  • Keep a garden hose or fire extinguisher ready for use; also keep a bucket of water at hand to soak used fireworks.
  • Do not try to relight a “dud” firework, let it rest 15 to 20 minutes then soak it in your bucket of water.
  • Keep pets away. Your dog may think a spinning or sparkling firework is something to play with or fetch.
  • “Mostly be responsible”
  • Keep an eye on children.
  • Clean up all debris
  • Soak all used fireworks
What is permitted and what is not:
  • Permitted: sparklers, fountains, pharaoh’s serpents, pin wheels and whirlgigs
  • Prohibited: fire crackers, sky rockets, torpedoes and other fireworks that explode, travel latterly, rise into the air or fire projectiles into the air
In the city of Fredericksburg, if you are found using illegal fireworks, the fireworks will be confiscated and you will be charged with a misdemeanor offense by personnel of the fire marshal’s office. 
Have a great Fourth of July!!