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Be Safe: Avoid using fireworks at home

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52 Weeks of Public Health Campaign Spotlight: Fireworks Safety

 FRANKFORT – As part of the 52 Weeks of Public Health campaign, the Kentucky Department of Public Health (DPH) within the Cabinet of Health and Family Services (CHFS) want you to celebrate the Independence Day Holiday safely to avoid personal injury or harm to loved ones.  

To help ensure that your holiday celebration is safe, attend a community fireworks show, and avoid home fireworks. 

“Fireworks are explosives and need to be treated as such,” said Dr. Hiram C. Polk, Jr., Commissioner of the Kentucky Department for Public Health. “If you do not want your child handling or being close to explosives, then keep them a safe distance away from fireworks.”

According to a study by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, 67 percent of fireworks injuries happen within the 30-day period leading up to the July 4 holiday, and children account for 35 percent of the injuries.  The three most common types of fireworks that keep hospital emergency departments busy during this holiday period are bottle rockets, firecrackers and sparklers.

“Many assume sparklers are a safer alternative for July 4  fun, but sparklers burn at approximately1,000 degrees Fahrenheit, which is enough to cause third degree burns,” according to Dr. Connie Gayle White, Senior Deputy Commissioner for the Kentucky Department for Public Health. “Sparklers should never be close to clothing or other items that could catch fire, and children absolutely should not handle them."

Throughout the planned 52 Weeks of Public Health promotion, DPH will spotlight a specific public health issue. Additional information about the campaign is available on the DPH website:http://chfs.ky.gov/dph/default.htm and will be posted on the CHFS Facebook page:http://www.facebook.com/kychfs where Kentuckians are encouraged to like and share posts among their networks of friends.

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The Cabinet for Health and Family Services is home to most of the state’s human services and healthcare programs, including the Department for Medicaid Services, the Department for Community Based Services, the Department for Public Health, and the Department for Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities. CHFS is one of the largest agencies in state government, with nearly 8,000 full- and part-time employees located across the Commonwealth focused on improving the lives and health of Kentuckians.