Independence Day often proves a dangerous holiday. Personal injuries abound year after year, and this year proved little different.
KTVU, a media source out of the San Francisco area recently reported on a man who will likely never enjoy a firework show again. The South Bay resident was lighting off fireworks and got one too close to his face. He was reportedly leaning over it when it blew up. He was rushed to San Francisco General Hospital, where he was treated for severe eye injuries. Two other local residents were treated for major hand injuries when fireworks exploded while still in their hands.
San Francisco was not the only area to see such catastrophe during the Fourth of July weekend. Fox 4 KC, out of Kansas City, Missouri, reported that a bad fireworks accident left one man without a hand. He was holding a half stick of dynamite when it burst and blew his hand off. Many local families, in the neighborhood were enjoying fireworks that evening, but the sense of joy was lost when the ambulance raced to the man’s residence.
According to USA.gov, in nearly fifty percent of firework accident injury cases, it is the hands or fingers harmed. Firecrackers account for thirteen percent of the accidents reported and those between the ages of twenty-five and forty-four are most likely to be injured. However, children under the age of fifteen accounted for twenty-six percent of the accident victims.
While the Fourth of July has come to an end, fireworks are a major part of many celebrations in the Saint Petersburg area, throughout the summer season. In order to avoid the need for medical care or personal injury attorney assistance, be sure that you are leaving the shows to the professionals. For a list of local entertainment and events, visit stpete.org. It is always safest to enjoy the show from afar. There is an added level of safety provided when professional organizations, backed by local medical and fire authorities, put on a fireworks show.
If you are going to be in the presence of amateur fireworks showcases, be sure that you abide by these safety guidelines, so you can enjoy your summertime activities.
Know the Laws If fireworks are not legal in your area, then it is not worth the risk of using them. If someone gets hurt because of your illegal action, you could lose everything. In St. Petersburg, the only legal fireworks are those labeled as ‘sparklers.’
Adults Only Regardless of how mature they may seem, children should never be allowed to participate in the lighting of fireworks. They should be kept at a safe distance to protect them from serious injury or worse.
Let Duds be Duds When a firework fails to ignite properly or fizzles out before showcasing its beauty, accept that it is a dud. Don’t try to relight it!
Water On-Hand Always have water within easy reach when lighting fireworks, in case of an emergency.
Make Them Last Light fireworks one at a time, so you have time to get to safety before it bursts.
Let these stories, as terrible as they may be, serve as a reminder. Holidays are meant to be enjoyed with family and loved ones. Though amazing and beautiful, fireworks are always a substantial risk. Know what you stand to lose before you break the law and take on such sources of danger.