Fourth of July: Fireworks injuries by the numbers


It's that time of year again when you hear fireworks going off in the neighborhood. Fireworks have long been one symbol of Fourth of July celebrations in the U.S.

But sadly, fireworks cause a lot of injuries and even a few deaths each year.

Here are some statistics to consider – and a few bits of advice, from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and the National Fire Protection Association:

– 200. The number of people who land in the emergency room every day with fireworks-related injuries in the 30-day span around the July 4 holiday.

– 11,400. Total number of people treated in U.S. emergency rooms with firework-related injuries in 2013.

– 4. Number of fireworks-related deaths in 2011, the most recent year available.

– More than 50. Percentage of fireworks injuries that are burns.

– 46. Percentage of fireworks injuries that affect hands and fingers. (About 17 percent of injuries affect eyes; another 17 percent affect heads, faces and ears.)

– 17. Percentage of fireworks injuries that involve sparklers. (Others: 14 percent reloadable shells; 13 percent firecrackers; 7 percent Roman Candles; 6 percent bottle rockets. See the whole list here.)

– 68. Percentage of fireworks injuries that happen to males.

– 17,800. Number of fires started by fireworks in 2013.

– $32 million. Property damage cost due to those fires.

Safety tips

– Don't let kids play with or light fireworks.

– Don't try to re-light or pick up a firework that didn't fully ignite.

– Keep a bucket of water/garden hose handy.

– Use only legal fireworks.

– Light fireworks one at a time and quickly retreat to a safe spot.

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