This Fourth of July, as you celebrate our nation’s independence under the glow of fireworks with friends and family, know that this was the vision of one of our Founding Fathers, John Adams.

“It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade. With shows, games, and sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other from this time forward forever more.”

Whether on the water or launching fireworks, please stay safe.

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources urges people to take precautions when boating or swimming. Last year, over 100 people drowned in Indiana. Many drownings could be prevented with the proper use of a life jacket and swim lessons. Always keep a watchful eye when kids are around water.

While fireworks are fun, it’s important to remember they are also hazardous. Practice common sense when lighting fireworks. Don’t light fireworks near buildings and make sure to keep children and pets a safe distance away. Always have a bucket of water or a hose nearby in case something goes wrong. Also, be considerate of veterans in your neighborhood, and remember that the sound of fireworks can impact those with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Please keep these and other safety tips in mind as you celebrate this week. For a list of firework shows across the state, click here.

House Republicans hope you have a safe Independence Day enjoying life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness to the fullest.