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July 4th.

Parades…..Picnics…..Flags……Fireworks.  We all have different traditions around holidays, but fireworks and the Fourth of July go together for most people in the United States.

As we prepare for the weekend festivities surrounding Independence Day, some thoughts about safety and fireworks:

  • Nearly 10,000 people are treated in emergency departments EVERY YEAR for fireworks-related injuries – most are children
  • 5% of these are hospitalized
  • In 2007, about 3000 injuries were caused by firecrackers, sparklers, and rockets – the most common fireworks purchased by nonprofessionals
  • Most commonly sites of injury are hands, eyes, head, face, and ears
  • Most fireworks displays are safe for handlers and observers when done by professionals
  • Most home fireworks are illegal under various local, state, and federal laws
  • In 2006, $34 million in damaged property resulted from fireworks-related fires

So play it safe and leave the colorful explosions to the professionals.  You can learn more about firework safety here

HAPPY FOURTH!

Source: USPCSC Fireworks Factsheet 6/26/12

Roger Miller, MD (OSU Student Health Services)

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