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Format: 04/18/2014
Format: 04/18/2014

News

West Penn Burn Center Warns: Leave Fireworks to the Professionals

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

PITTSBURGH – On a typical Fourth of July, more fires are reported than in any other day of the year, and fireworks are the most common cause.
 
Each year, fireworks injure nearly 10,000 people, with most of those injuries happening in the 30 days surrounding the Fourth of July holiday, and most involving sparklers, firecrackers and aerial devices.
 
The danger is particularly great when consumers attempt to use professional-grade fireworks. Four people died last year from injuries sustained through professional grade or homemade fireworks, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
 
“At West Penn Burn Center, we believe that all fireworks should be left to professionals,” said Ariel Aballay, MD, Director of the West Penn Burn Center. “A burn injury is always painful and often disfiguring. It’s not worth the risk to you and your family.”
 
Fireworks can also cause devastating orthopaedic injuries, particularly to the fingers, hands and arms.
 
Children and males are disproportionately injured by fireworks. Males and people under 20 each account for 60 percent of all injuries.
 
“Parents often think that sparklers are safe for children, however each year sparklers account for more than 1,000 injuries,” Dr. Aballay said.  
 
In addition to the risk of injury, fireworks also cause an estimated $36 million in property damage each year, according to the National Fire Protection Association.
 
“Enjoy your community fireworks display with family and friends and stay safe over the Fourth of July,” Dr. Aballay said.
 
 
 
 
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West Penn Allegheny Health System
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