ALTUS, OK (KSWO) - If you plan on popping fireworks of your own this Fourth of July, you'll want to take extra precautions to avoid any injuries.
Shooting off fireworks, if done carelessly, can be very dangerous. When you're shooting off fireworks you never want to be too close to them when they go off and you definitely don't want to be holding them. Plus, this year several of our Western counties are dealing with more problems as they are currently in a moderate drought.
Altus Emergency Management Director Lloyd Colston said as you head out to celebrate the Fourth of July, you should make sure that safety comes first.
"It's very important because you only have one life, let's protect it the best you can," Colston said. "Remember that on July the 4th it's important to observe firework safety. People lose fingers, toes, eyes and lives. Let's keep them intact."
Altus and some of our western most counties are currently in a moderate drought, so on top of keeping yourself safe, you'll also need to worry about your property.
"High heat, high wind, low humidity values are going to make the wildfire danger worse so be extra careful with your cigarettes butts driving in the car, don't be throwing those out. Don't be popping fireworks in dry grassy areas. We want to keep everyone safe, including the land owners," Colston said.
Shooting off fireworks is illegal within Altus city limits, but Colston said he's worried about things get out of control in the county.
"That grass is going to burn and we don't need our firefighters going out unnecessarily," Colston said.
There will also be lots of traffic this weekend, so Colston had a word of advice for those planning to hit the road and head out of town.
"Observe the traffic laws, put your seatbelt on, keep your speed, don't be distracted, keep your cell phone away from you while you are driving that car," Colston said.