Summer is in full swing with barbecues, family gatherings, sports, and many other seasonal activities returning after the COVID-19 pandemic forced many to celebrate away from one another. Unfortunately, with these fun events also come a high risk of injury.
In fact, each year roughly 13,000 people nationwide find themselves in the Emergency Department because of firework-related injuries, often leaving permanent damage to eyes, hands and face. Of these 13,000, more than 50% of fireworks injuries happen to people under the age of 20. Amongst the most common causes of injury are burns, seen frequently as a result of mishandling or igniting fireworks.
“We want everyone to have a wonderful 4th of July spending time with family and friends. Fireworks can cause life changing injuries. It is best to leave the firework show to the professionals,” said Dr. Kendal Ayers, emergency physician at Mercy Health. “The following tips will help your loved ones celebrate safely with the hopes of not seeing you in the Emergency Department.”
· Consider safer alternatives such as glow sticks or confetti poppers.
· Don’t allow children to handle fireworks, including sparklers. Sparklers can reach 2,000°F, which is hotter than a blow torch!
· Observe your local and state laws.
· Leave the firework shows to the professionals.
· Have a designated sober adult light all legal fireworks.
· Never hold a lit firework in your hand or point/throw a lit firework at anyone.
· Keep children and other observers at a safe distance behind a protective barrier.
· Keep a bucket of water close for disposal of fireworks.
Mercy Health – Urbana Hospital is part of Bon Secours Mercy Health one of the 20 largest health systems in the United States and the fifth-largest Catholic health system in the country.
Info from Mercy Health.