Fireworks are very fun. Even as an adult, it’s nearly impossible not to enjoy staring up at the mini explosions above your head, whether it’s the Fourth of July or not. But Uncle Sam wouldn’t want you to lose an eye or suffer a fire-related injury while celebrating his birthday. But the highest number of firework-related injuries occur between June 20 and July 20, not just on the 4th, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). So GJEL Accident Attorneys urges partiers to take extra caution to avoid fire-related accidents all summer long.
In 2008, there were 900 firecracker injuries; 300 bottle rocket, Roman candle, and reloadable shell wounds; and 1,300 other firework-related accidents, contributing to a total of 7,000 injuries that year according to the U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission. In 2009, there were 9,000 emergency room visits resulting from fireworks injuries.
“Parents are often present when children engage with fireworks, however, that does not mean an injury will not occur,” said Andy Gillin, Managing Partner of GJEL Accident Attorneys. “Sparklers, the most popular dazzler for families with youngsters, account for 1/3 of eye injuries in children less than five-years-old.”
So while celebrating parades and family reunions this summer, you’re free to enjoy all the hot dogs, burgers, and beverages as you can handle. But when it comes to fireworks, remember to step back and think twice about safety. If you’re in doubt, follow GJEL’s fireworks tips this summer:
- No child should use fireworks without an adult present.
- Check outdoor surroundings to ensure there is no dry grass or other flammable material nearby.
- Never throw fireworks at anyone or anything (in the event of starting a fire).
- Have a bucket of water and hose handy to douse fireworks and to cool sparklers.
- In the event of a burn, pour cold water or use ice directly on the burned area to minimize tissue damage.
- For an open wound, wash and disinfect and then cover with gauze to minimize infection.
- For any eye injury, go immediately to the emergency room. Do not rinse or apply ointment.
Photo credit: Maurice