TITLE - Fireworks Safety for Victoria Day - Toronto, Ontario

(sounds of Fireworks)

TITLE - Bev Gilbert - Fire Safety Division Manager, Office of the Fire Marshal

"The fire service wants everyone to enjoy this Victoria Day, holiday weekend. If you insist on having your own family fireworks, there are some safety precautions we want you to take."

"You need to appoint someone who will be in charge of the display. Someone who will take responsability; someone who knows the hazards of discharging fireworks, and knows how to discharge fireworks safely."

"They would need to read the instructions well in advance - it doesn't make any sense to try and read the instructions at night when people are watching and waiting for you. For example, the instructions on this one actually says 'Spectators should be at least 25 metres away' - that's a long distance, that's probably as far as here to the post, away from us. Not many backyards in the Toronto area would have that space to discharge fireworks."

"In addition, you should have a pail of water, a garden hose is a great idea, and a cell phone near by so you can the emergency number if there is an incident."

"Sparklers should not be given to children under the age of 8."

"It's important that you keep spectators 'up-wind' when you're discharging fireworks. However, today is a very windy day, so you would never discharge fireworks on a windy day (at all)."

(sounds of Fireworks)

"The fire service doesn't want anyone to experience a fire or burn-related injury this holiday weekend. In Ontario, over a 5-year period, there were 80 fires caused by fireworks, resulting in over $1 million in property loss. In addition, many other smaller fire and burn-related injuries go unreported to the fire department. This is what we are trying to eliminate."

TITLE - For more information, please contact your local Fire Department (LOGO)

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