On the 4th of July, Americans gather despite their political beliefs to celebrate this great country we call home. Unlike in 1776, our celebrations Include a slew of fireworks and hopefully some tasty BBQ. If you’re still undecided about your plans for the 4th, check out the list of local celebrations on page 30 of this month’s magazine.
If you enjoy putting together your own fireworks display, here are some things to consider.
The 2016 Amendment
We were all excited that the General Assembly legalized fireworks in Georgia last year, and thanks to Michael Caldwell’s latest article (on page 18) we were made aware of the amendment to this law: Fireworks cannot be fired after 9 p.m. unless it is either New Year’s Eve or the 4th of July, in which the times are extended to 1 a.m. and midnight respectively. Also, they may not be fired within 100 yards of a hospital, nursing home, prison or nuclear power plant for various safety reasons.
If you have animals of any kind, especially if you are aware that they are frightened of loud noises, please make sure to keep the animals indoors. Even when they are indoors, please make sure they are wearing some sort of identification in case they escape. Make sure dogs have done their business before dark and bring them inside for the night; same with cats. If you will not be home during fireworks, make sure you leave them in their “safe spot” (an area of the home that you know they feel secure) or board them at a safe, trusted boarding facility.
If you see what looks like a dog lost, running in fear or unattended:
- Use your best judgment before approaching the animal (frightened dogs will bite regardless of how sweet or friendly they are)
- Call the number on their identification tags
- Whether you are able to grab the animal (should they not have identification) or not, please post on your neighborhood forum or fill out our lost and found pet form to alert the owners where their pet was last seen.
It’s every fur-parent’s worst nightmare for their baby to go missing. Please do your part to help your neighbors find their fur babies before it’s too late.
If you are shooting fireworks in a residential neighborhood, please be considerate of those with young children, especially infants and toddlers who can’t yet stay up for the festivities. Shoot your fireworks with moderation, so the noises won’t frighten the children or keep them from sleeping. Your all-night party could take your neighbors days to get their child back on a sleeping routine. Food for thought: you might not be a parent now, but perhaps one day you will be.