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Fireworks and hand sanitizer don't mix, health experts warn

Experts recommend playing it safe by washing your hands with soap and water instead of using hand sanitizer if you're using fireworks.

TAMPA, Fla. — With so many local firework shows and displays canceled, some people around the country are taking the light show into their own hands this Fourth of July. 

This year, a new state law will allow people to set off fireworks at home on the Fourth of July in Florida, where local government rules permit.

In addition to other necessary safety measures you need to take, experts are adding another warning -- don't use hand sanitizer if you're handling fireworks. 

Why? Hand sanitizers are made up of alcohol - at least 60 to 70 percent worth, if you're following CDC recommendations during COVID-19. 

"Alcohol and fire do not mix," National Safety Council (NSC) spokeswoman Maureen Vogel told CNN. "You shouldn't pair flammable items; it's the proverbial recipe for disaster." 

Handling fireworks shortly after applying hand sanitizer, while the alcohol's residue is still on your hands, could increase the risk of a burn injury, Dr. Dhaval Bhavsar, medical director of the University of Kansas Medical System's Burnett Burn Center, told local news outlet KSHB

Around 7,300 people reported injuries related to fireworks near the Fourth of July holiday last year, according to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (USCPS). 

About 57-percent of fireworks-related injuries are for burns, the USCPS estimates.

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