Fireworks and the Fourth of July
Fireworks are not only illegal in the City and parts of the county but they are also are very dangerous.
It is illegal to discharge fireworks or to have fireworks in your possession in the City of Houston. A recent Texas House Bill allows for the transportation of fireworks, however there are restrictions including where the fireworks are located inside the vehicle and if they are opened or unopened. See HB1813 for more information >>>
The City will continue to enforce, in compliance with state law, fire and safety regulations within the city.
Harris County residents should also be aware that HFD will be enforcing the fireworks ban in the Limited Purpose Annexation areas>>>
The fines are anywhere from $500 - $2000 for each individual firework.
Warnings are no longer used because of the seriousness of the firework laws. If a minor is caught with fireworks, the parent or guardian will receive the fine even if they were unaware of the minor's possession and/or usage.
Even though it is legal to buy, possess, and use consumer fireworks (1.4G) in the unincorporated areas of Harris County, there are some places you cannot use fireworks even in the unincorporated county. Such as near churches, hospitals an asylum, a licensed child care center, or a public or private primary or secondary school or institution of higher education unless the person receives authorization in writing from that organization.
Although Fireworks and celebrations go together, especially during the holiday season, they can be dangerous when used improperly; causing serious burn and eye injuries.
Citizens should report all complaints regarding the illegal use of fireworks directly to the HPD Tel-communicator (non-emergency line) at 713-884-3131. If the citizen believes that there may be a fire and/or medical emergency related to the use of fireworks, he/she should dial 9-1-1 and request the HFD.
Before conducting outdoors activities and feeling thirsty, drink plenty of water and electrolyte-replacement beverages,” said Persse. “Avoid beverages or food sources with caffeine, alcohol or large amounts of sugar because these can actually result in the loss of body fluid.
Conduct outdoor work or exercise in the early morning or evening when it is cooler. Individuals unaccustomed to working or exercising in a hot environment need to start slowly and gradually increase heat exposure over several weeks. Take frequent breaks in the shade or in an air-conditioned facility.
A wide-brimmed, loose-fitting hat that allows ventilation helps prevent sunburn and heat-related emergencies. A tight-fitting baseball cap is not the best choice when conducting strenuous outdoors activities. Sunscreen also helps protect injury from the sun's rays and reduces the risk of sunburn.
Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing that permits the evaporation of perspiration. Do not leave children, senior citizens or pets unattended in a vehicle.
Watch out and be aware of the signs of a heat-related illness, such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke which can be deadly if not treated immediately. his means keeping an eye on your friends and family members for signs they may be experiencing this and acting immediately.
"Look Before You Lock" According to City of Houston EMS Physician Director/Public Health Authority Dr. David E. Persse, if children are trapped inside cars, it can result in heat exhaustion or heat stroke, leading to permanent disability or death in a matter of minutes. Heat stroke, also known as hyperthermia, can cause shock, seizures, irregular heartbeat, heart attack, and damage to the brain, liver and kidneys.
Children are also locked in hot cars due to them playing in the car while it is parked. Citizens should always lock their car and ensure children do not have access to keys or remote entry devices and children should be taught that cars are not a place for play.
Barbeque Grill Safety Tips
Although the City of Houston Fire Code prohibits all open-burning within the Houston City Limits at all times the Houston Fire Department would like to remind citizens to be extra vigilant in activities that may lead to accidental fires, including improper use of a barbeque pit or improper disposal of barbeque coals, ashes or briquettes and carelessly discarded smoking materials.
Portable barbecue pits, charcoal grills and other open-flame cooking devices outside of a building should not be operated on combustible balconies or located within 10 feet of combustible walls or roofs or other combustible materials.
When igniting the barbecue charcoal, citizens should use a charcoal lighter, not gasoline. Gasoline can flash violently in and around the pit causing serious injuries to anyone in the area of the flash. A fire extinguisher or charged garden hose should be handy while the fire is burning. Check the pit frequently to insure that it is okay.
Hot ash and coals from barbecue pits and charcoal burners should be placed in a non-combustible container until cooled or thoroughly saturated with water, before being disposed of.
Pool and Water Safety
Active, focused, adult supervision is the most important safety measure to prevent a water-related tragedy involving a child. The vast majority of children who drown in pools do so in the backyards of their own homes or of relatives.
- NEVER leave a child alone near water
Always watch your children around swimming pools
- Use approved flotation devices
- If your apartment has a pool, inspect the fence and gate. If the gate does not lock or you find any other defects with the fence, report it to the apartment management immediately.
- Bring a cell phone to the pool in case of emergency
- Make sure there is no standing water on the pool deck.
- Standing water is the #1 cause of slips and falls around a pool. NO RUNNING on the pool deck!
- Enroll children over the age of 3 in swimming lessons taught by qualified instructors.However, swimming lessons don't make your child "drown proof." Remember, flotation devices are not a substitute for supervision.
- REMEMBER- Swimming lessons do not make your child "Drown-Proof"!
- Always have a first aid kit and emergency contacts handy
- Watch for dangerous "TOOs"- Too Tired, Too Cold, Too Far from Safety, Too Much Sun, Too Much Strenuous Activity
- Pay attention to local weather conditions and forecasts. If lightning and thunder are nearby, get out until the storm has passed.
Teach Children these safety tips:
- Always swim with a buddy
- Don't dive into unknown bodies of water. Jump in feet first to avoid hitting your head on the shallow bottom.
- Don't push or jump on others in or around water
- Swim in supervised areas only
- Obey all rules and posted signs
HFD also recommends parents and guardians learn CPR. Seconds count if a person drowns and performing CPR quickly and correctly can save their life. For more information on local CPR classes, please contact the American Red Cross , your local hospitals or medical schools.
Finally, be prepared in case of an emergency. Keep rescue equipment and a phone next to the pool. Learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
Fences and walls should be at least four-feet high and installed completely around the pool. Gates should be self-closing and self-latching. The latch should be out of reach of small children.
If a house forms one side of the barrier for the pool, doors leading from the house to the pool should be protected with alarms that sound when the doors are unexpectedly opened. Or, use a power safety cover, a motor-powered barrier placed over the water area, to prevent access by young children. For above-ground pools, steps and ladders to the pool should be secured or removed when the pool is not in use.
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