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How to store your fireworks safely

Perhaps you bought your fireworks on July 4 and discovered at the end of the night that you had bought too many. No problem - you can save them for another holiday or even for next July 4.

However, if they are stored improperly, that could mean property damage and injuries to yourself or to others. Even fireworks from legitimate manufacturers and sellers do malfunction sometimes. Make sure to follow these guidelines to keep your family safe this summer.

Store in a dry place

Keep your fireworks in a dry place (maybe a shed) that is inaccessible to children and pets. A high shelf or in a locked container is preferred. Avoid storing them in your house if at all possible, and keep them away from flammable materials such as gas.

A metal or plastic box does well for fireworks storage — definitely safer than a cardboard box, which can easily catch on fire. Also, keep in mind that many storage places do not allow fireworks to be stored in their units.

Mark the container clearly

It is easy to forget what is in that box on the top shelf. Mark your storage container so that you do not accidentally take fireworks down and end up setting them off.

Be careful if you happen to come across old fireworks from a previous owner or renter. While they may be unexpired, they can be dangerous, and you do not know where they came from. To render them useless and to avoid a terrible injury or even a death, soak them in water overnight. Place them in a plastic bag to keep them wet, and dispose of them along with your trash.

Fireworks that are homemade or that come from sources other than legitimate retailers are risky to buy and to keep around. If you already have such fireworks in your possession, do not store them; safely dispose of them instead.

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