WASHINGTON, D.C. (WBRE/WYOU) — We have a warning from experts about fireworks safety ahead of the 4th of July. Last year, fireworks caused some 9,100 injuries, ranging from cuts and scrapes to permanent disfigurement.
As fireworks soar sky high on the fourth of July, so do the number of injuries. The Consumer Product Safety Commission demonstrated the power of legal, and illegal, fireworks.
According to the CPSC, five people were killed and over nine thousand injured in fireworks related incidents in 2018. The majority in a 30 day period surrounding the 4th of July.
“180 people visited our emergency rooms on a daily basis during this time because of firework injures and deaths,” Anne Marie Berkle, the acting chairman of the CPSC said.
Those injuries include severe burns, amputations of fingers, and serious eye trauma. And it’s not just airborne and explosive fireworks, sparklers burn at around 2,000 degrees.
“That’s as hot as touching a coal from a burning fire,” Dr. Sarah Combs or Children’s National said. “It could melt gold, silver, a host of other metals. And certainly we don’t want to put those in the hands of our children.”
To reduce risks, the CPSC says fireworks should be lit one at a time. They should never be thrown or pointed at another person. And they should never be re-lit or picked up if they fail to ignite. And young children should never be allowed to light or play with fireworks, even if an adult is present.
“More than 50% of fireworks injuries in children happen in spite of parental supervision,” Dr. Combs said.
Sights synonymous with the holiday are best viewed from a safe distance.
The CPSC announced four recalls of fireworks found to be overloaded with pyrotechnics. For a list of those products go to cpsc.gov/RECALLS