The 4th of July may be the ultimate summer celebration, but along with the fun, food, and sun comes some serious safety risks. In fact, this popular holiday is considered by many to be amongst the most dangerous. However, with some proper planning, you don’t need to worry. Here are five essential tips to help make your 4th of July celebration happy and accident-free.

  1. Use caution when lighting fireworks.

No 4th of July party is complete without a few fireworks but proceed with caution. According to Consumer Product Safety Commissions (CPSC), on average, 280 people a day are sent to the emergency room because of firework injuries on and around the 4th. To help protect you and your family, never use illegal fireworks and always use adult supervision with children. Also, have a bucket of water close at hand before lighting your first fuse. Fireworks can stay hot for hours, too. Make sure when the fun is done you dispose of your used fireworks properly by soaking them in water before tossing them in the waste bin.

  1. Always grill outside and away from your home.

Grilling outdoors may seem like common sense to most, but every year, thousands of homes catch fire due to improper use of grills. Before you turn on your tank or light your charcoal, check your surroundings. Make sure your grill is in a safe location, far away from any structure, porch, or patio that could go up in flames once the cooking begins.

  1. Watch out for food poisoning.

Whether it’s using the same utensils for the raw meat and then the veggies, or just leaving out your famous potato salad a little too long, backyard BBQs are high risk for food poisoning. Do your best to practice proper food safety and limit cross contamination from cooked and uncooked foods. Also, don’t leave any food sitting out too long in the summer heat. When in doubt, you may want to throw it out.

  1. Practice good water safety.

Many families love to spend their 4th of July around water swimming, boating, or relaxing at the beach. If you plan on playing in the water this holiday, then practice some essential water safety tips. Never allow children to swim unsupervised. If there isn’t a lifeguard on duty to help keep watch, then assign a few adults to keep a close eye on the pool.

  1. Don’t forget the sunscreen.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, one in five Americans will develop skin cancer, and your best bet for protection is sunscreen. Since most people spend their 4th of July outdoors and in the sun, be diligent about applying and reapplying sunscreen. Using sunscreen diligently will help protect against the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays and will help you not feel the burn the following day.