We will celebrate our country’s independence next Thursday. The Fourth of July is one of our country’s most popular holidays.
All cities around here – Issaquah, Newcastle, Sammamish – ban setting off fireworks. Unfortunately, King County still allows them. The result is that personal injury or property damage is a real possibility.
This isn’t to say that we shouldn’t enjoy fireworks. We should. But we should leave them to the professionals.
Sammamish has many activities planned, including a fireworks display at 10 p.m. The event starts at 6 p.m. with music, a kid’s area and food vendors. A special section inside gives you all the details.
Newcastle also has an evening event with fireworks at Lake Boren.
Given all that, there’s no reason for individuals to buy or use fireworks. Even those touted as “safe and sane” can be dangerous.
There were 354 fireworks-related injuries and fires reported to the State Fire Marshal’s Office in 2012 by fire departments and hospitals. Of the 354 reports received, there were 128 fires and 226 injuries.
Here’s what happened by the numbers:
n Seven residential fires totaling $880,500 in property loss, one was caused by an illegal device, three were caused by legal fireworks and three were caused by an unknown type of firework device.
n Twenty-six fires and 64 injuries were caused by devices which are illegal to own or possess in Washington state.
So, please, enjoy the Fourth of July. Have a party. Invite friends. Crank up the barbecue. And then sit back and let the professionals put on the fireworks show.
– Craig Groshart, Issaquah & Sammamish Reporter