It's tradition that many of us will set off fireworks to celebrate our country's independence. But that doesn't mean we throw all safety precautions out the window (especially in a pandemic).
Many of our local communities have canceled fireworks in order to keep its citizens distanced. That may mean more amateur shows going off in neighborhoods.
According to the National Safety Council, there are 19,500 accidental fires in the U.S. due to fireworks. Of those, 1,300 resulted in structure fires and 300 vehicle fires.
In 2018, the most recent year for data, 9,100 people were treated at emergency rooms for injuries due to fireworks.
But following all safety rules where you are may not be enough to ensure they're safe for everyone around you. In order to calculate fire danger, I used factors such as humidity, wind, heat, and lack of rainfall. Plotting these on the map indicate the best conditions locally will be Friday evening.
Humidity levels are set to drop on Saturday. That will increase fire danger, especially for Western Illinois.
Northern Illinois will see residual "moderate" fire danger Saturday evening. In addition, anyone heading north into Minnesota and Wisconsin for the weekend should watch for high fire danger through Sunday.
Much like Saturday, fire danger will be enhanced Sunday afternoon from Eastern Wisconsin through most of Illinois and southern Missouri.
Fire danger will once again drop heading into the evening on Sunday, but still remain elevated in Northwestern Illinois up toward Green Bay, Wisconsin.
Reminder: please obey all local rules for setting off fireworks.
-Meteorologist Eric Sorensen