BETHESDA, Md., Dec. 28, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Millions of Americans will ring in the New Year with sparklers, firecrackers and trick noisemakers and a variety of consumer fireworks. Americans in certain municipalities and states will have a greater variety of backyard fireworks as well as more places to purchase them due to a continuing national trend in relaxing consumer fireworks laws.
In an effort to ensure that the holiday is a safe one, the American Pyrotechnics Association (APA) encourages consumers to observe local laws and be especially mindful of restrictions on fireworks usage in areas affected by wild fires and drought conditions. Please be considerate of your neighbors and alert them of your intended fireworks activities, especially veterans and families with young children or pets, to ensure that they are not startled or frightened.
"With the liberalization of consumer fireworks laws and record-breaking growth in backyard fireworks usage, the number of fireworks-related injuries and fires has dramatically declined," said Julie L. Heckman, Executive Director of the APA. The fireworks-related injury rate is 43% lower than it was in 2000, when the trend in relaxing consumer fireworks was first initiated. 
Heckman urges, "New Year's Eve is one of the most popular days of the year, aside from Independence Day, to celebrate with backyard fireworks so safety must be a top priority. It's important that individuals take the time to plan their fireworks celebrations by selecting a safe location that is free of debris and has a flat level surface. Additionally, make certain to read and follow all instructions for use and keep spectators at a safe distance." The public can learn more about how to #CelebrateSafely by downloading Professor Sparkz tips to ring in the New Year safely: http://www.celebratesafely.org/assets/FactSheets/SparkzNewYearFlyer-2017.pdf
And by watching this brief animated safety video:
Have a safe and spectacular New Year and remember to #CelebrateSafely!
Media Contact: Julie L. Heckman, Executive Director
American Pyrotechnics Association
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SOURCE American Pyrotechnics Association