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16:49 PM

Spectrum News 1: The Dangers of Fireworks

Every Fourth of July is filled with bright, colorful fireworks. Whether you go to a professional show, or maybe attempt to do it yourself, that one day a year is filled with the endless booming of fireworks. But many have never stopped to think about the dangers of fireworks and sparklers. 

Dr. Brad Raetzke, assistant medical director of emergency care at OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital, sat down with Spectrum News 1 host, Mike Kallmeyer, on "In Focus Ohio" to discuss why backyard fireworks really aren’t safe at all.

“The most numerous types of injuries we see are small burns,” said Dr. Raetzke. “But the most devastating are the major traumas that we see which would be third degree burns that are caused by house fires set as a result of fireworks.” And depending on the size of the fireworks, blast injuries will also be seen.

Dr. Raetzke believes the best way to prevent injuries is education. “I think the first thing is to increase awareness. Because it’s knowing that while they look harmless of small fire crackers, sparklers, they really are quite dangerous. So its understanding from a parents point of view, these not safe to put into hands of children because one second your fine and the next you now have permanent blindness. It’s just not worth the risk,” said Dr. Raetzke.

Even sparklers, which may seem harmless, reach temperatures of up to 2,000 degrees!  Experts recommend using safer toys like glowsticks to celebreate the holiday.

If an accident does happen it is “important to recognize the injuries and the severity of it,” said Dr. Raetzke. Look to see if it is serious and call 911 if it is. You can also click here to find an OhioHealth Emergency Department near you.

Many people believe that because it is legal that it must be safe and that is not the case. This Fourth of July make sure you are keeping yourself and the kids safe by going to see a professional fireworks show. It is safer, and less work!

Click on the Spectrum News 1 logo below to see the full interview and learn more safety tips. 

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