Fireworks and weather: what you need to know

With the fourth of July ahead of us, the fireworks season is in full swing.

While you should always take proper safety precautions when handling fireworks, you should also pay close attention to the forecast.


What you need to know

  • Dry conditions can exacerbate the fire risk of fireworks
  • Wet, damp weather usually produces less vibrant colors
  • A wind that is too calm or too strong is not ideal for starting fireworks

The weather can be an important factor in determining whether it is safe to light that fuse.

Here are some considerations to keep in mind:

Drought

Fireworks and drought don’t mix.

Summer conditions can make vegetation more prone to fire. Every year, fireworks produce tens of thousands of fires, both large and small. These fires can lead to serious destruction of property and even loss of life.

In fact, many large-scale displays are usually placed over bodies of water to prevent embers from falling into dry, wooded areas. Often the local authorities prohibit the use of fireworks under high fire risks or drought.

Make sure to put fireworks away from houses and other flammable materials. Keep a bucket of water handy in case the embers ignite.

Rain and lightning

Rain can definitely put a damper on your fireworks festivities.

However, if you try to push through, keep in mind that wet fuses will not burn. Moist air can also change the look of fireworks, making them appear less vibrant than they normally would.

And always forget to light fireworks when you hear thunder.

Lightning can fire unlit fireworks, causing them to fire. Of course, you also become a target for the bolts during a thunderstorm.

Wind

Another important consideration when lighting pyrotechnics is wind.

Strong winds can push falling embers into spectator areas or into highly flammable trees. The wind can also blow smoke to the ground.

However, even a calm breeze is not ideal.

Smoke can stagnate in a calm wind and also reduce the air quality.

Keep an eye out

Keep the weather in mind and always check the forecast before putting out that firework.

And above all: have fun!

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