The Joplin Fire Department is warning residents to use caution when lighting fireworks this week

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JOPLIN, Mo. — The Joplin Fire Department is warning residents to use caution when lighting fireworks this week.

Independence Day is just days away – meaning you’ll be seeing more and more fireworks.

But if you’re not careful, the fun can turn dangerous.

JFD EMS Training Chief Dustin Lunow, said, “Currently ages 10 – 14 are most likely to be injured. That accounts for about 9100 injuries a year.”

Sparklers can be a risk due to the extreme temperatures they reach as they burn.

“First degree burns can start to happen around 118 degrees – it’s all about how long you leave that heat on the skin. Second degree burns are around 130 degrees. And these are well, well beyond that.”

Joplin fire fighters recommend wearing closed toe shoes to protect your feet and keeping a bucket of sand nearby for immediate disposal.

Fountains can also be a risk.

JFD Fire Training Chief Mark Cannon, said, “They can retain a lot of heat. In fact the one that we just fired off is going to retain anywhere from 150 to 400 degrees. The problem we see is that if people discard that near combustible materials, that could start a fire also the heat could possibly cause some injuries to the skin.”

They recommend allowing fountains to cool for at least a couple of hours before disposing of them.

Fireworks are allowed in Joplin city limits from July 1st through the 4th between the hours of noon and eleven p.m.

“A couple of limitations in the ordinance. The biggest one is bottle rockets. Those are prohibited,” said Lunow.

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