COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – The Fourth of July is just a few days away and the State Fire Marshal is presenting ways to stay safe before lighting up the sky.

Citizens are encouraged by the SC Fire Marshal to keep safe when participating in any activity involving fireworks.

“Every celebration should begin and end safely, we don’t want a happy occasion to turn into an emergency room visit,” said State Fire Marshal Johnathan Jones.

If you are planning to set off fireworks this Independence Day, here are some tips suggested by the fire marshal:

  • Observe local laws. If unsure, whether it is legal to use fireworks, check with local officials.
  • Observe local weather conditions. Only use fireworks outdoors, away from homes, dry grass, and trees.
  • Dry weather can make it easier for fireworks to start a fire.
  • Buy from permitted fireworks retailers.
  • Use common sense. Always read and follow the directions on each firework.
  • Store fireworks in a cool, dry place.
  • Always have an adult present when shooting fireworks.
  • Ensure people and pets are out of range before lighting fireworks.
  • Light one firework at a time and keep a safe distance.
  • Throw away the duds. Put used fireworks in a bucket of water; keep a garden hose on

Jones suggests not to do the following:

  • Carry fireworks in your pocket.
  • Give fireworks to small children. Sparklers, for example, burn at 2,000 degrees.
  • Point or throw fireworks at another person.
  • Shoot fireworks from metal or glass containers.
  • Re-ignite malfunctioning fireworks.
  • Experiment or attempt to make your own fireworks.
  • Place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.

Jones also mentions that there will be professional fireworks displays happening throughout the state for residents to enjoy.