In the United States alone, each year fireworks cause an estimated 15,600 reported fires, including 1,400 total structure fires, 200 vehicle fires and 14,000 outside and other fires. These fires result in an estimated $21 million in direct property damage.
230 people on average go the emergency room every day with fireworks-related injuries in the month around the July 4th holiday.
Will your home insurance cover fireworks injuries and damage?
Most home insurance policies provide several different types of protection — each with varying payout limits. Also, there are different types of accidents.
If you're shooting off illegal fireworks and set fire to your house, you may not be covered. Most policies exclude damage resulting from illegal acts or when you purposely caused injury or damage.
If fireworks set fire to leaves in your gutter, a section of your home insurance policy for fire incidents could cover the damage. Fireworks that malfunction and injure a friend on your property could be covered under a section for medical payments to others. Likewise, liability payments could cover your fireworks accidentally shooting into your neighbor’s house and breaking a window.
But if you get into a bottle-rocket war and injure someone, you may not be covered because the incident was intentional.
· Obey all local laws regarding the use of fireworks.
· 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. Save your alcohol for after the show.
· 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.
· Do not experiment with homemade fireworks.
· 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.
Have a happy and safe 4th of July Holiday!