Prevent Blindness America Urges Fourth of July Fireworks Safety

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CHICAGO—As the Fourth of July holiday approaches, Prevent Blindness America urges the public to educate themselves on the dangers of fireworks and ways to prevent fireworks-related injury. According to the organization, injuries from fireworks can have severe impact and can even last a lifetime.

PBA suggests the following precautions to prevent fireworks-related injuries:

  • Do not purchase, use or store fireworks of any type.
  • Be aware that even sparklers are dangerous and cause one half of fireworks injuries in children 5 and younger.
  • Protect yourself, your family and your friends by avoiding fireworks.
  • Attend only authorized public fireworks displays conducted by licensed operators but be aware that injuries can still occur.

The organization also cites the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC) 2012 Fireworks Annual Report. According to the report, an estimated 8,700 fireworks-related injuries were treated in U.S. emergency rooms last year, with a majority occurring around the Fourth of July holiday and 12 percent affecting patients’ eyes.

The group also proclaims its continued support of the development and enforcement of bans on the importation, sale and use of all fireworks and sparklers, except authorized public displays by licensed operators, believing such bans are the only effective means of eliminating fireworks-related injuries and their resulting social and economic impact.

For more information on fireworks safety, please call Prevent Blindness America at (800) 331-2020 or log on to the  website.