FORT EUSTIS, Va. (June 17, 2009) -- Many people love to celebrate with fireworks, especially during the festive Fourth of July season. But it is important to remember that fireworks can be dangerous. The National Council on Fireworks Safety recommends that you only purchase consumer fireworks from a licensed store or stand.

Fireworks sold out of an individual's home or car are likely illegal explosives that can seriously injure you.

Typical consumer fireworks include sparklers, fountains, cones, fire crackers, bottle rockets, roman candles and multi-shot products. Legal consumer fireworks are regulated by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, packaged in bright colors, and have safety warnings printed on them.
Illegal fireworks are typically wrapped in plain brown paper without printed safety warnings and manufacturer's name.

Typical illegal fireworks include the M80, Quarter Stick and Cherry Bomb. If someone tries to sell you illegal fireworks, please notify the local police department.
Legal consumer fireworks are very safe if used according to their instructions. Injuries from consumer fireworks continue to decrease each year. However, if used improperly they may be dangerous.

The National Safety Council encourages consumers to follow these safety tips:

Aca,!Ac Only use fireworks outdoors.
Aca,!Ac Follow all local laws regarding the use of fireworks.
Aca,!Ac Never give fireworks to young children.
Aca,!Ac Have a bucket of water or water hose nearby in case of a malfunction or fire.