MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – New Year's Day is just around the corner and fire officials are reminding residents to have fun and stay safe when it comes to lighting off fireworks.
Georgia State Fire officials teamed up with the Macon-Bibb County Fire Department, Jones County Fire Department, Warner Robins Fire Department, Monroe Fire Department, and TNT Fireworks to host a safety demonstration about safe and proper usage of fireworks under Georgia law.
"We try to let people in this area know what types of fireworks are legal," Larry Smallwood, Chief of Fire Protection for the Macon-Bibb County Fire Department, said. "The kind, they really just sparkle. They don't explode and they don't go in the air."
Any large firework displays must be approved by the State Fire Marshall. But even small sparklers can cause a lot of damage. Smallwood says 8,600 people are injured every year using fireworks. He urges everyone to stay safe by lighting one firework at a time, only light them outside on a concrete surface, put used fireworks in a water bucket, and keep a hose or fire hydrant nearby. He also says parents should keep an eye on children, especially when it comes to lighting sparklers.
"The children get injured or they forget that they're hot or they actually throw them into pine straw and cause grass fires," he said.
If sparklers are not the way you want to ring in the New Year, there will be a large midnight fireworks display at the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame New Year's Eve as part of the Pinkest Party on Earth.