BBB Tip: Independence Day Firework Safety Best Practices


A celebration of the holiday season is represented by fireworks filling the sky to honor Independence Day. While a fun opportunity to acknowledge the holiday, the Better Business Bureau encourages consumers to safely navigate the process of securing and lighting off fireworks over the coming days. The Better Business Bureau reminds consumers to consider best practices when buying and using fireworks during the holiday season.

BBB shares these tips to help consumers celebrate responsibly:

1. Know your state laws, city ordinances. For example, Nebraska State Law allows fireworks to be sold between June 24 and July 5, while Kansas State Law allows fireworks to be sold between June 27 and July 5. Local jurisdictions have the authority to be more restrictive, so be sure to check your city ordinances for more information on dates and time of firework use. The Nebraska Safety Council has a detailed rundown of its city ordinances available here:

2. Be aware of conditions. Legal or not, it’s important to be aware of the weather and environmental conditions before lighting fireworks. Lighting pyrotechnics in high winds and dry conditions could cause a fire and lead to property damage. We suggest you watch your preferred local weather coverage or check the Department of Agriculture and Forestry website to be aware of any fire danger/burn bans. You should also keep a water hose, a bucket of water or fire extinguisher on hand in case of an accident.

3. Find a trustworthy seller. Firework sales are seasonal and, therefore, are typically sold from temporary locations and roadside stands. We still encourage consumers to check the company’s BBB Profile before purchasing. A trustworthy seller should be familiar with their products and be able to share what each one does. They should also offer proof of purchase. Avoid buying items that do not show the manufacturer’s information or appear to have been opened previously.

4. Use fireworks responsibly. Only use fireworks as intended. Never shoot fireworks indoors; never aim them at people; and never alter, combine or relight duds. Be sure to read the caution label before igniting as this will help you know what to expect and recognize when the product is malfunctioning. To be safe, soak spent fireworks in water before disposing of them and pour water over the area where you were lighting them to prevent any fire.

5. Keep small children & pets in mind. On average, 250 people go to the emergency room every day with firework related injuries in the month around the July 4th holiday according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC).

  • Adults should always supervise children when lighting fireworks.
  • Do not hold children while lighting fireworks, not even sparklers. While they may seem harmless, sparklers are associated with at least 900 of the treated injuries.

6. Use secure and traceable payment methods. According to BBB’s research, those who pay with a credit card are less likely to lose money. Be cautious when paying by digital wallet apps, prepaid money cards, or other non-traditional payment methods. Learn more about payment types and how to use each safely.

ABOUT BBB: BBB is a nonprofit, business-supported organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. BBB services to consumers are free. BBB provides objective advice, BBB Business Profiles on more than 5.3 million companies, 11,000 charity reviews, dispute resolution services, alerts and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust. Visit for more information.