Safety urged in celebrations

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 2, 2003

This Friday families all across Dallas County will participating in that age-old Independence Day tradition. Grills will be fired up, meat will be slathered in barbecue sauce and fireworks will be bought in bulk.

Yet enjoying in all this holiday fun can lead to serious accidents if revelers fail act on the side of caution.

Fireworks, for instance, are one of the leading causes of injury during the Independence Day weekend.

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Mike Luster, manger of the Crazy Bills fireworks store on Highway 80 East, said the biggest sellers so far this season have been the artillery shells and the $20 Crazy Bill Bags filled with a wide assortment of fireworks.

Lighting these miniature rockets and watching them explode into a brilliant ball of light can be a lot fun, but they should not be handled by children or inexperienced users.

Every purchaser of Crazy Bill merchandise is warned of this through a flier listing the company’s safety rules.

According to Consumer Product Safety Commission, an estimated 8,000 people were treated in hospital emergency rooms for injuries associated with fireworks last year.

Even the smaller firecrackers like bottle rockets and sparklers, which have been handled by children for years, cause the highest number of injuries.

During the Independence Day weekend of 2002, Vaughan Regional Medical Center saw 364 patients, five of which were eye trauma likely related to fireworks.

It is also important to remember that fireworks are illegal inside the Selma city limits.

For those inside the city who want to enjoy fireworks in a safe environment, the city is hosting it’s annual free fireworks show at the Memorial Stadium. The gates open at 7 p.m. and the show will begin an hour later.