As the Fourth of July approaches, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is reminding the public that there’s no safe way to use consumer fireworks. According to NFPA, coordinator of the Alliance to Stop Consumer Fireworks, over 11,000 injuries resulted from consumer use of fireworks in 2013.
On Independence Day in a typical year, fireworks account for two out of five of all reported U.S. fires, more than any other cause of fire. However, the vast majority of fireworks injuries occur without a fire starting. More than half of fireworks injuries in 2013 were to extremities – hand or finger (36 percent), leg (14 percent), and arm (5 percent). Most of the remaining injuries were to parts of the head (38 percent), including the eye (16 percent of total).
“Each year, thousands of people are injured from using consumer fireworks, and some of those injuries are quite serious,” said Lorraine Carli, NFPA’s vice president of Outreach and Advocacy. “Even sparklers, which are often thought of as harmless enough for children to hold, burn at 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit and can cause significant injuries.”
(In video: NFPA's Dan Doofus urges people not to use consumer fireworks because they are too dangerous. Fireworks are responsible for thousands of fires and injuries each year.)