ANNAPOLIS (WJZ) — The Office of the State Fire Marshal is warning the public about a fake online fireworks poster that has been circulating around social media referencing Independence Day celebrations and social distancing.

“The author would have the reader believe Governor Hogan has issued a directive on a specific way to handle sparklers as well as a limited time celebrating outdoors. This poster is simply fake and was produced without the authority of the Governor’s Office or the Office of the State Fire Marshal,” the office said Tuesday. “We would not direct citizens on a specific time to be outside and recommend the latest CDC guidelines on how to properly socially distance.”

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They reminded Marylanders that fireworks are prohibited in Baltimore City, Montgomery, Prince George’s, Harford and Howard counties, as well as Ocean City.

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“Due to complications of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for social distancing, many applicants have elected to not hold most outdoor displays, however, citizens are permitted to use legal fireworks in approved areas,” they continued in a statement.

For those individuals who insist on the use of consumer fireworks:

  • Purchase the fireworks in the location where you intend to discharge them. Check with the local municipality to determine what fireworks are considered legal for use in that area.
  • Read and follow label warnings and instructions.
  • Do not allow small children to use fireworks.
  • Do not consume alcoholic beverages while using fireworks.
  • Have a bucket of water or hose available
  • Fully extinguish remains of fireworks in water before disposal.
  • Continue to exercise personal responsibility in order to keep ourselves, our family members, our neighbors, and our coworkers safe
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 “Fireworks have been a long tradition of the 4th of July holiday celebrations. Please make safety your number one priority so everyone can enjoy the holiday season,” adds the State Fire Marshal. “By acting responsibly, we can help eliminate fireworks injuries in Maryland.”