No major holiday would be complete without a safety blog from us here at Gordon Insurance. Independence Day, the Fourth of July, is tomorrow and that means traffic, grilling, fireworks, and drinking.
A Brief History
Independence Day is the celebration of when the United States adopted the Declaration of Independence back on July 4th (or around there) in 1776. A year later, 13 gunshots were fired and celebrations were held. 1870 marks when Congress declared July 4th an unpaid federal holiday; however, it was made a paid holiday in 1938. Today, national songs are sung, fireworks are shown, military bases have a one gun salute, parades, barbecues, fairs, picnics, concerts, reunions are held. And final fun fact is that the Bristol Fourth of July Parade in RI is the oldest celebration in the US (Since 1785!)
During one of the busiest driving times of the year, exercise caution on the roads. Many people can get aggressive due to the large volume of cars on the road, so just relax and drive defensively; do not get into any confrontations. Remember, everyone is trying to get somewhere, and all will arrive…eventually.
Keep the gas away from main structures/flammable objects
Turn of the gas when not in use
Charcoal: use the right lighter fluid
Check for leaks
Grills remain hot long after the gas is off
The most iconic Independence Day activity has to be setting off fireworks. Many will travel with blankets, sweatshirts, and snacks in tow to local shows or the Boston Pops event; however, some will go the “do it yourself” way. Despite the fact fireworks are illegal in Massachusetts, people still bring them into the State. If you do, follow these tips (from the National Council on Fireworks Safety)
Obey local laws
Keep water nearby
Don’t relight duds, wait 20 minutes then put in water
Stay away from the shooter (who should wear safety glasses)
Alcohol and fireworks: nope. Have a designated shooter
Sparklers are a 12 and up activity
NO HOMEMADE FIREWORKS
Speaking of drinking, spend the 4th however you want to celebrate, but drink responsibly and have a designated driver. The traffic situation is bad enough this time of year. For more information about drinking and driving at holiday time, see our Christmas time Drinking and Driving Prevention blog.
What are your plans for the 4th? Leave a comment below.