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Authorities urge caution when using fireworks

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ATLANTA (AP) - Federal authorities in Atlanta are warning Georgia residents to celebrate the Fourth of July safely and responsibly.

The Atlanta office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is reminding people to keep safety in mind when they us fireworks. ATF says people should carefully follow directions on the fireworks' packaging. ATF says people also need to be aware of local laws regulating the use of fireworks.

ATF is the federal law enforcement agency that enforces federal explosives laws. It works with federal, state and local partners to prevent the manufacture, trafficking and illegal possession of illegal fireworks and illegal explosives devices.

Illegal explosives don't meet the same safety and quality standards as consumer fireworks. Their manufacture and possession can result in federal felony and misdemeanor charges.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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