Americans have been celebrating their independence even before they actually won it. In 1777, thirteen gunshots were fired in salute, once at morning and once again as evening fell. An official dinner was served to the Continental Congress in Philadelphia. The quintessential American holiday is just around the corner and Window Genie wants to make sure you have a fun and safe 4th of July.
The Fourth of July is one of the most traveled holidays of the year, so it should be no surprise that this is at the top of our list. July 4th has had an average of 127 traffic deaths over the last decade. It is the deadliest holiday of the year.
- The basics should always be covered when traveling. Wearing your seat belt and observing other laws like speed limits, no pass zones, and do not text while driving.
- Clean your vehicles lights and windows. Make sure your mirrors and lights are functioning.
- Routine maintenance is best to be done before your trip. Getting an oil change as well as topping off all essential fluids.
- Store extra water in your trunk. Traffic jams and other unforeseen problems may arise that could strand you and your family. Having extra water is always a good idea especially on long trips with children.
- Never let your gas tank get below a fourth of a tank. Getting gas when it is available is a smart move. Making sure you have a gas can just in case is also a good idea.
What would your Fourth of July celebration be without some delicious food fresh off the grill? Not to be an alarmist, but according to the National Fire Protection Association 9,000 home fires are caused by grills every year and 16,600 patients went to the emergency room.
- First, check the gas cylinder hose for leaks. Apply a light soap and water solution to the hose and look for any bubbling. If you see bubbles you have a leak.
- Never turn on the gas while the lid is closed. The gas may build up inside, and when ignited you will get more than you bargained for.
- If you are using a charcoal grill do not add lighter fluid to already kindled coals.
- Remember coals will remain hot for many hours after the flames are gone.
- When preparing the food be aware of cross contamination. Raw chicken and raw beef should be handled separately and with different utensils.
- It should go without saying, but please don’t grill indoors!
The best part of any Fourth of July celebration is the fireworks. Everything from sparklers to roman candles can be fun, but can be seriously dangerous. Every year there is an average of 230 firework related injuries.
- Just like grilling, please only set off fireworks outdoors.
- Even though it might be tempting, never buy second hand fireworks. If a firework is wrapped in newspaper or a brown paper bag, it’s probably not safe.
- Be aware of your surroundings. Never aim a firework at anyone. Never light fireworks off near trees, brush, or your home.
- Always light fireworks one at a time and never relight a dud. The majority of injuries occur when someone tries to relight a firework that didn’t fire.
- Keep a fire extinguisher, bucket of water, or garden hose handy. Obviously, the most dangerous part of fireworks is the potential of starting a fire.
- Finally, just use common sense. Alcohol and fireworks don’t mix well.
While that sounds like a great big lists of warnings… don’t forget to have fun, eat some apple pie and enjoy the fireworks with your friends and family. What are some of your favorite 4th of July traditions? Share below!