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Our opinion: Be responsible, be safe with fireworks

The Fourth of July is a special time of year in America that combines history and celebration.

It also brings with it a healthy amount of fireworks. Stands have been popping up steadily in parking lots all over promising fun and excitement.

However, shooting off fireworks also brings with it a need for responsibility. The Austin Daily Herald is asking you to remember that you are most likely a neighbor to someone, and while they may enjoy the Fourth of July, they may not enjoy it the same way that you do.

We all know that fireworks are the most fun when shot off at night. The bright blues, reds, whites, greens and yellows are spectacular against the skyline, but it must be tempered with understanding that some may wish to get rest rather than see and hear your display.

We also urge you to consider pets, who may react adversely to the loud bangs and bright flashes. To us, fireworks can be exhilarating, but to your furry companions, they can be terrifying.

And be sure to clean up after yourself. If you insist on having your own display, then we insist that your garbage not be left behind.

And last but not least, be safe, especially now as the state grapples with various levels of drought throughout Minnesota. It takes very little to start a fire that could damage land and structure.

Also be aware of personal safety. Keep a safe distance after lighting the fireworks and keep them away from buildings.

The Fourth of July is a time of celebration, so please take steps to celebrate in a safe and respectful way during this time of year.