More than 6,000 Americans Spent 4th of July in Emergency Rooms Due to Fireworks-related Injuries.
While many Americans were enjoying Independence Day festivities with family and friends, in 2010 an estimated 6,300 Americans spent part of their Fourth of July holiday in the emergency room due to fireworks injuries, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) Fireworks Annual Report issued in 2011.
The report also found that children under 15 years of age accounted for approximately 40 percent of the estimated injuries. And, children under the age of 5 experienced an estimated 700 injuries. For that specific age group, sparklers accounted for 43 percent of the total injuries. In fact, fireworks sometimes referred to as “safe and sane” including sparklers, fountains and other novelties, made up 2 out of 5 injuries treated in emergency rooms.
To help families enjoy a safe and happy Fourth of July, Prevent Blindness America, the nation’s oldest non-profit eye health and safety organization, is making an effort to educate the public on the potential dangers of fireworks.
Prevent Blindness America warns:
- Fireworks are extremely dangerous
- Do not purchase, use, or store fireworks or sparklers of any type
- Protect yourself, your family and your friends by avoiding fireworks and sparklers.
- Attend only authorized public fireworks displays conducted by licensed operators, but be aware that even professional displays can be dangerous.
There were more than 1,300 reported eye injuries in 2010. In the event of any eye-related accident, Prevent Blindness America recommends the following:
If there are specks in the eye,
- DO NOT rub the eye.
- Use an eye wash or let tears wash out specks or particles;
- Lift the upper eyelid outward and down over the lower lid;
- Keep the eye closed and see a doctor or go to the emergency room.
If the eye or eyelid is cut or punctured,
- DO NOT wash out the eye with water.
- DO NOT try to remove an object stuck in the eye.
- Cover the eye with a rigid shield without pressure. The bottom half of a paper cup may be used. Visit a doctor or go to the emergency room immediately.