State officials caution against using backyard fireworks
The State Fire Marshal urges Ohioans not to use backyard fireworks because of high fire danger from dry conditions as well as the general risk of personal injury. Larry Flowers says the combination of dry conditions, high temperatures and possible wind gusts the next few days create a greater risk of fires triggered by sparks. Dr. Tom Waters of the Cleveland Clinic says more than half the injuries that occur on the fourth are the result of fireworks. Waters notes even sparklers are dangerous. Prevent Blindness Ohio says sparklers accounted for the largest number of estimated injuries in children under the age of five last year. Waters cautions people to avoid touching unexploded fireworks. He also says those who choose to set off fireworks near the home should keep children away from the display. Waters emphasizes that it's important to get prompt medical attention if someone gets hurt by fireworks. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission says there were nearly ten thousand fireworks-related injuries treated in emergency rooms and four fireworks-related fatalities last year.