Upstate News

July 2, 2002
Darryl Geddes 315 464-4828

Doctor urges extreme caution around fireworks

Emergency room physicians at University Hospital are urging July 4 revelers to stay away from illegal fireworks and save themselves a visit to the emergency room.

“Even though it is illegal to possess fireworks here in New York, we find it necessary to state the obvious, that fireworks are dangerous, because we do see the horrific results of the injuries they cause,” said Deborah Mann, M.D., an emergency room physician at University Hospital.

In the past two years, University Hospital has seen nearly a dozen firework related injuries that have caused burns to the face, hands and body. Some of the burns and explosions have caused fingers to be amputated.

“Most common injuries are burns to the face and hands when an individual picks up the firework, looks at it and wonders why it hasn’t yet exploded,” Mann said. “Then it explodes in their face.”

Children are most often the victims of firework mishaps, she says. “They see a brightly colored explosive lying around, pick it up and then use mom or dad’s cigarette lighter to ignite it,” she said. “Their next stop is the hospital emergency room.”

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