INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – We are just a few days away from Fourth of July festivities, which means local hospitals are about to see a big spike in trauma cases.
Just last year, there were more than 200 firework-related injuries reported to the state department of health just in the first week of July.
Firecracker, rocket, and sparkler use resulted in nearly half of those injuries that were reported. Doctors see dozens of patients come in with serious burns and even missing fingers and toes. Dr. Joshua Adkinson, a plastic surgeon at Riley Hospital for Children, says the injuries are severe and the rise.
“In fact, I just operated on someone today who had a fireworks-related injury. I had to remove part of one of his fingers and I have done a few toes to thumb transfers for similar injuries, where we take another body part and transplant it to the hand and reconstruct the thumb or finger,” said Dr. Joshua Adkinson.
Local firework shops, like Phantom Fireworks in Castleton, tell us they ask their customers to use good common sense always in handling fireworks.
Read all directions, cautions, labels and warnings on each individual fireworks item to understand the product performance and hazards associated with the use of the item before you use it.
Also, never attempt to use professional display fireworks without the proper permit or license.
“You are using sparklers or Roman candles douse them with water. There is a chance of reigniting. For sparklers, have a bucket nearby so kids do not burn themselves,” said Phantom Fireworks employee R.J. DeVince.
Also, local fire departments see a big uptick in calls. Wayne Township fire says they see more than 50% of calls to fire stations are for flames caused by fireworks.