Independence Day is a time for us to celebrate. It’s probably the only day of the year when we have the opportunity to get together with family members and friends and enjoy fireworks. However, if we are not careful, a fun celebration can take a tragic turn. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) warns that even small fireworks such as bottle rockets and firecrackers can be dangerous.
According to CPSC statistics, in the 30 days leading to July 4 in 2010, 1,900 people were treated in hospital emergency rooms for injuries caused by fireworks. During that same time period, 8,600 people in the United States suffered fireworks-related injuries. About 40 percent of these injuries involve children under the age of 15.
There are a number of steps we can take to prevent injuries caused by fireworks. Children using fireworks should always do so under vigilant adult supervision. Children should not be allowed to light fireworks and parents should not assume that a firework is safe because it appears to be small or harmless.
If you are going to use fireworks, you should do your research on the potential dangers related to each firework. If the firework is packaged in brown paper, this could be a sign that it is professional grade and particularly dangerous. Fireworks should never be thrown. A bucket of water should always be nearby to put out any fireworks. All fireworks, including sparklers, should be doused with water right after use so they are completely put out.
Common injuries suffered in firework accidents include burns and lacerations to the victim’s hands, face, and head. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, injured victims of firework incidents may be able to pursue financial compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
If you or a loved one has been injured due to someone else’s negligent use of fireworks, please contact an experienced New Jersey personal injury lawyer at Lependorf & Silverstein to better understand your legal rights and options. Call us today at 609-240-0040 for a free and comprehensive consultation.