101 Things the Fire Department wishes you knew



Monday, June 29

Explosives

On this, the 300th post, I wanted to get a little political on everyone. No doubt some have figured out where I am and said, "It figures" or "I knew it!" but this is a different politics.

The politics of labeling and marketing.

Quick pop quiz - Why do American's set off fireworks on the fourth of July? Is it to reenact the battle for independence? Perhaps to recreate what Francis Scott Key saw out the window of the ship when he wrote the star spangled banner? We may never know, because now it is all about making noise and starting fires.

Fireworks are responsible for thousands of injuries and scores of thousands of dollars in property damage, mainly because most folk who handle them are inexperienced with explosives.

Yes, "fireworks" are explosives. Flammable compounds, gun powder, magnesium and a fuse. Explosives. The truck that delivers your explosives to the local Wal-Mart is placarded by DOT as carrying dangerous materials. Explosives.

Possibly millions of children and even more adults will run to the local store or, in some places, the giant local fireworks shop for a selection of bottle rockets (fire relocation devices), M80s (finger relocation devices) and countless other bright paper covered, shiny, nifty named explosive charges with the intent of setting them off on the Fourth of July.

I say leave it to the professionals. My local town has an impressive display launched from a barge on the river. As the fireworks go, the barge floats slowly downstream so you have a good view all the time.

"Oh Happy, lighten up, its the 4th! What are you? A commie?" For not giving my children explosives to celebrate signing a paper? If we were celebrating the invention of dynamite, maybe I could buy it, but setting off explosives is a dangerous way to show how proud you are of your independence.

6 comments:

The Road Doctor said...

I just shoot my gun in the air...

;)

Gasda said...

HM Says : "If we were celebrating the invention of dynamite, maybe I could buy it...."

Be careful what you wish for, now people are going to be blowing stuff up May 26. This is the day Alfred Nobel was granted US patent for dynamite...

I'm going to start stockpiling now (11 months to go)...
Let the explosions begin....

Capt. Schmoe said...

Where I live, all fireworks are illegal. About 20 years ago, some brain surgeon decided to try making them legal for one year. The local fire dept. had a 100% increase in fire activity during that time. The law was changed back shortly after.

AdCy said...

I totally agree with you, HM. I don't even let my kids play with sparklers. My ex thinks I am psychotic...I say safe.

Fire In Ice said...

I look back on growing up in the ol' AK and remember the fireworks fights we got into...
There we were, 3 stories off the ground in our fort on the ice covered roof shooting fireworks at each other. Roman candles, m80's, black cats, you name it.
Then there was high school where we used bomb shells (the firework) to blow up old shoes during high fire danger.
It all seemed like a good idea at the time.
Fireworks probably should be illegal, but as an emergency services worker, they make the Fourth of July a heck of a lot more interesting. Especially when I meet some stupid kid that is just like I was.

EliMae said...

It's completely fitting if you consider the fact that winning our independence was a highly dangerous feat that left thousands dead...