Fireworks are a tradition, an iconic symbol to celebrate Independence Day on July 4th. No celebration is complete without a few red, white and blue explosions of color into the nighttime sky on the Fourth. Yet, the joy of fireworks can cause serious injuries and have devastating outcomes, if safety measures are not followed. The safest way to enjoy fireworks is to leave the pyrotechnics to the professionals, and just sit back and enjoy the show!
Each year more than 12,000 firework related injuries are treated in U.S. Emergency Departments. Nearly half of those injuries were to individuals younger than 20 years of age. Children 0 to 4 years of age had the highest rate of firework related injuries, with 26% of these injuries sustained as an innocent bystander. The next highest age group with firework injuries, are older teens, the 15 to 19 year old group. Fireworks are not just responsible for personal injuries, they cause more than $35 million in property loss each year.
While professional public firework displays are the safest, many people purchase roadside fireworks to create their own celebrations at home. If not handled properly, fireworks can cause hand and eye injuries in kids and adults, as well as other disfiguring or devastating injuries.