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Protecting Your Eyes During Fireworks

Posted on: June 28th, 2024 by Our Team

Although watching fireworks is a popular summer and even year-round event, it is important that both participants and observers take appropriate precautions to avoid what could amount to potentially serious injuries to one’s eyes.  Below are some precautions and tips to consider:

Maintain a Safe Distance

It is reported that approximately 65% of people who sustain fireworks injuries are simply bystanders.  According to the Department of Homeland Security, if you are not the one lighting the fireworks, you should be about 150 feet away for aerial fireworks and at least 35 feet away for ground-based fireworks.  This distance will enable you to gain a good view, but most importantly, it will ensure you are completely clear of any debris or mishaps that could occur during and after the lighting process.

Leave the Fireworks to the Professionals

The safest way to observe fireworks is to allow professionals to light the fireworks.  If you are still inclined to light off your own fireworks, then be certain to do it far away from everybody who is watching and wear appropriate eye protection.

Avoid Touching Unexploded Fireworks

If you happen to find a firework that has not exploded, avoid picking it up or trying to light it again.  It could be set off unexpectedly which could be dangerous to everyone.

Do Not Allow Children to Play with Fireworks

The best way to prevent children from sustaining an eye injury from fireworks is to simply not allow them to play with fireworks.  Even when using sparklers, children should be supervised.  Sparklers should also be kept at arm’s length and never swing them around or run with them.

Plan for the Unlikely

Even when taking precautions, lighting a firework does not necessarily go as planned.  In order to prevent sparks from starting a fire, it is advisable to have a bucket of water nearby and a hose if possible.  In addition, prior to discarding any firework, whether it has been used or not, you should soak it in water for a few hours.

Be Aware of Possible Impact on Pets

While both children and adults can be enthralled by fireworks, pets tend to have the opposite reaction. Pets can be scared by fireworks and go missing.  Therefore, pet owners should ensure their pets are in a secure area and their collars have tags with updated information in the event they get out.  It is, however, preferable to keep them inside while fireworks are being used with a fan or other source of white noise in an effort to calm them down.

What to Do If You Experience an Eye Injury from Fireworks?

As with any eye related injury, you want to seek medical attention right away.  In the interim, you should not rub either eye or attempt to rinse out the eye.  You also do not want to apply pressure to the eye or any type of ointment.

For those in Union Square, Harlem, Greenwich Village, and broader NYC seeking top-notch ophthalmology and optometry services, consider Union Square Eye Care.  With a legacy of excellence since 1986, our state-of-the-art facilities and experienced team are here to cater to all of your eye care needs.  Don’t let vision problems go unchecked.  Schedule your appointment today and ensure your eyes are in the best hands in New York City.  Visit us online or call to learn more about how we can help you maintain optimal eye health.

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