AUSTIN (KXAN) — As 4th of July celebrations approach, it is important to take into account the current weather conditions when considering launching fireworks.
Conditions to keep in mind include drought, wind, lightning and rain. Variations of these conditions can have both positive and negative effects on the sparkly celebrations, so it is imperative to have full awareness in order to have a safe and fun Independence Day.
Among the most important conditions to consider when it comes to fireworks is drought.
When drought conditions exist, launching fireworks becomes extremely dangerous unless there has been recent rainfall to moisten the ground and vegetation. However, in drought conditions without recent rainfall, launching fireworks dramatically increases the chance of starting a fire, as the dryness of trees and other surrounding plants are primed for ignition.
Wind can spread fire, so if sparks from a firework are blown into dry bushes for example, it could easily lead to the starting of a wildfire.
Also, high winds could lead to a firework tube potentially tipping over and launching right into a tree or grassland. A small amount of wind can be good, as it would help move the smoke away and make for better visibility of the show.
Rain can be both good and bad for a fireworks show, depending on the strength of the downpour.
A light drizzle is best as it keeps the ground moist and therefore decreases the chance of a fire starting. Heavy rain can be very bad for a fireworks show as it could lead to the fuses of the fireworks becoming wet and consequently unable to launch.
If there is a thunderstorm in the forecast, then it is best to cancel. Stray lightning strikes can hit unlaunched fireworks and ignite them on the ground, which could easily result in serious injuries to bystanders.
To have a safe and fun 4th of July celebration, it is crucial to account for these various weather conditions; especially this year as an unseasonably hot and dry June has produced conditions ripe for the starting of fires.