Special to The Town Crier

Many areas across the state will be in danger of accidental wildfires this month as some Texans celebrate the holiday season with fireworks.

Fireworks are commonly linked to Christmas and New Year festivities, but Texas Forest Service warns the outcome can be disastrous if proper safety precautions are not taken.

“Many Texans will be using fireworks to celebrate Christmas and the New Year,” Texas Forest Service Fire Operations Chief Mark Stanford said. “TFS wants Texans to use fireworks safely in order to protect themselves and to avoid accidentally starting wildfires.”

Under Texas law, county government officials have the authority to restrict certain types of aerial fireworks when drought conditions exist or when hazardous fuel conditions are present during the winter months. County officials also consider drought conditions when determining outdoor burn bans for their counties. Texas Forest Service does not make decisions regarding restrictions on fireworks or outdoor burning bans. The state agency does, however, provide drought condition information to counties.

Tips for the safe use

of fireworks:

• Adhere to all county and city fireworks laws.

• Use fireworks outdoors away from dry grass and buildings.

• Read firework labels and use only as directed. DO NOT ALTER THE PRODUCTS.

• Use only with adult supervision.

• Keep water, wet towels and a garden hose nearby.

• Allow fireworks to cool completely before handling.

• Discard used fireworks into a bucket of water.

For more information about Texas Forest Service, go online to

http://texasforestservice.tamu.edu.