Firework sales opening day sparks safety conversation

Local News

With the 4th of July holiday right around the corner, firework sales are taking off.

Russell’s Fireworks opened for the 2019 season on Monday.

With around 400 different types of fireworks at Russell’s, safety comes first.

“You put the sparklers in the end of it and the child’s hand is protected from any sparks,” salesman Steven Miles said.

Russell’s Fireworks is celebrating a milestone this year and owner Patsy Hodgkins is thrilled with what she calls the perfect firework weather conditions.

“This is 40 years of selling Russell’s Fireworks and the best, prettiest green grass I have seen in 40 years,” Hodgkins said.

It’s just day one of firework season and Hodgkins said options are endless.

“We have fountains, we have repeating shells, we have Excalibers, which is artillery shells, we have sparklers for the children, big cakes and small cakes for shows,” Hodgkins said.

While conditions appear to be at low-risk, assistant Fire Marshal Jared Burchett warns this may be misleading.

“Don’t kid yourself with the fact that some of this grass is green, there’s still plenty of vegetation and fuel in these fields that are ready to burn,” Burchett said.

To ensure a fun and safe holiday, always have tools for putting out a fire close by.

“A simple fire extinguisher from your local store would work, a bucket of water, something of that nature,” Burchett said.

Also, know ways to safely shoot off fireworks. Take it from those who know it best and “tape the cake”.

“What it is, we take any of our aerial shot cakes, tape them together,” Miles said. “It gives them a wider footprint so the pure power from the blast doesn’t tip them over and cause them to shoot off into the crowds or off in the tall grass and start a fire.”

When you’re lighting up the sky next week, keep in mind safety comes first.

Russell’s is open through July 4th. If a fire is out of your control, the Wichita Falls Fire Department wants to remind you to call 911 immediately and that it’s illegal to use fireworks in city limits.

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