Safety

The American traditions of parades, cookouts and fireworks help us celebrate the summer season, especially our nation's birthday on the Fouth of July. Here at Big Gator Fireworks we are actively involved in consumer fireworks safety. We purchase only reliable and safe fireworks from highly regarded distributors locally. We offer safety information by the National Council on Fireworks Safety and the American Pyrotechnics Association (APA). Please view some of the recommended safety tips and frequently asked questions below:

Frequently Asked Questions:

Age to purchase in Missouri? 14 years unless accompanied by parents or guardian.

Do you sell Bottle Rockets? Yes, in Missouri it is legal for us to sell Bottle Rockets.

Do you sell M-80s, cherry bombs, quarter sticks or silver salutes? No, it is illegal for us to sell such fireworks.

Are there non-flame fireworks? Yes, we offer different non-flame fireworks. Ex: Party Poppers, Pop Pop Snappers, Smoke Grenades, etc. Please ask an associate.  


Recommended safety tips from the National Council on Fireworks Safety:


  • Know your fireworks; read the cautionary labels and performance descriptions before igniting.
  • A responsible adult SHOULD supervise all firework activities. Never give fireworks to children.
  • Alcohol and fireworks do not mix.
  • Wear safety glasses when shooting fireworks.
  • Light one firework at a time and then quickly move away.
  • Use fireworks OUTDOORS in a clear area; away from buildings and vehicles.
  • Never relight a "dud" firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water.
  • Always have a bucket of water and charged water hose nearby.
  • Never carry fireworks in your pocket or shoot them into metal or glass containers.
  • Dispose of spent fireworks by wetting them down and place in a metal trash can away from any building or combustible materials until the next day.
  • Report illegal explosives, like M-80s, cherry bombs, quarter sticks and silver salutes to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms at 1-888-ATF-BOMB

Firework FAQs from the American Pyrotechnics Associations (APA):


What precautions should people take when using fireworks this Fourth of July?

  • Always read and follow the directions carefully. Only ignite fireworks outside in a well-cleared area. Have a responsible adult supervise all fireworks activities. Light fireworks one item at a time. Have a bucket of water available to dispose of used fireworks.


What are the different classifications of fireworks?

  • Consumer Fireworks (formerly known as "Class C" Fireworks) - Also known as 1.4G Fireworks. These devices are most commonly sold at neighborhood stands during the Fourth of July season. Display Fireworks (formerly known as "Class B" Fireworks) - Also known as 1.3G Fireworks. These are the fireworks used in large community displays run by licensed professionals (pyrotechnicians). These devices are not intended for use by consumers.


What is the maximum amount of explosive material contained in a consumer fireworks device?

  • The legal limit of explosive material in a consumer (1.4G or Class C) firework is 50 mg (about the size of half an aspirin tablet). Any item containing more than 50 mg is illegal and should be avoided.


How many people are injured by fireworks each year?

  • Although the number of people enjoying fireworks today is significantly greater than ever before, the fireworks industry's numerous safety campaigns and consumer education programs are paying off, as evidenced by the amazing 44% decrease in the injury rate of fireworks-related accidents. Unfortunately, a large majority of these injuries are the result of the misuse of legal consumer items or the use of illegal explosives.


How do fireworks work?

  • The basic ingredient of fireworks is black powder - also known as gunpowder. However, the creation of a fireworks display is truly an art form, one that has been perfected by some families for generations. The "paints" used by a craftsman of a pyrotechnic device are the different chemicals added during productions. These chemicals provide the dazzling array of colors and visual effects on the canvas of a night sky, as well as the sounds (reports) that accompany the burst. The manufacturer carefully selects the chemicals to be used and determines the order in which they are packing into the casing in an effort to create a specific visual effect. Once the materials are packed into the casing, a fuse is affixed so that the device can be safely ignited. Although all of the colors and effects of a fireworks display are spectacular, the hallmark of a truly fine show are deep blue or dazzling white bursts - the marks of an expert pyrotechnician.


How can we best enjoy a fireworks display?

Here are a few tips to help you maximize your enjoyment of a public fireworks display:

  • Don't get too close. Sitting at least 500 feet from the fireworks provides the best view of the show.
  • Watch for the quality and brightness of the colors. Deep blue and dazzling white are especially difficult to produce.
  • Count the number of explosions in a shell. High-quality display shells may have multiple explosions that vary in color.
  • There should be no lag time in a professional show. There should always be something going on for you to enjoy.
  • Resist the temptation to keep any leftover material you may find after a show. The professionals that put on the display will clean up all material afterwards.


Where can I learn more about the safe enjoyment of fireworks?

  • The National Council on Fireworks Safety is a valuable resource for learning more about safely enjoying fireworks. A nonprofit organization, the Council is dedicated to promoting the safe use of fireworks. Through education programs involving the media, safety organizations and police and fire departments, the National Council on Fireworks Safety helps educate the millions of Americans who use fireworks every year.