Mary Alice Reporting:

(Friday, July 6th) New Philadelphia, Ohio – While setting off fireworks is illegal in Ohio, a local fire department recognizes many residents may do this and are offering safety tips.

You can buy fireworks in the state but only smoke bombs and sparklers are legal.

If you do choose to set off fireworks over the long July 4th weekend, New Philadelphia Fire Lt. Bobby Smith recommends having a safe area.

“Please don’t hold a firecracker or try to throw it. You just want to make sure you stay back because things can happen real quick. Make sure that they are stable [and] you want to make sure that you’re not firing them around where there’s dry grass, and of course, keep them away from buildings.”

According to the National Fire Protection Association, fireworks start an average of 1,300 structure fires and $43 million in direct property damage each year.

With sparklers, Smith cautions users to keep a safe distance from themselves and other people since they can cause eye damage and burns. He adds to never give them to little children to prevent injuries.

Go to www.mfpa.org for more firework safety tips.

Copyright WTUZ Radio Inc., 2018