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Mid-America Hand to Shoulder Clinic Offers Tips for a Safe Fourth of July

Palos Hills, IL (PRWEB) June 27, 2012

Independence Day fireworks displays are beautiful, and they can be safe as well when done by trained professionals. However, when amateurs start handling sparklers, firecrackers, mortars, bottle rockets, etc., minor and severe injuries will occur.

The U.S. Fire Administration shares these statistics on fireworks-related injuries: In a single year, about 9,000 people were treated in emergency rooms, almost three-fourths of them between June 18 and July 18. Approximately 40 percent of the injuries were to children under 15 years old.

About 1,200 injuries were sparkler-related, 900 caused by firecrackers and 400 from bottle rockets. Statistics showed that 30 percent of the injuries were to hands and fingers, 22 percent to legs, 21 percent to eyes and 16 percent to head, face and ears. More than half of the injuries were burns, while most eye injuries were contusions, lacerations and foreign matter in the eye.

But it’s a given that people will continue to use home fireworks. To promote safety and reduce firework hand trauma, MidAmerica Hand to Shoulder Clinic offers some guidelines:

  •     First of all, use common sense.
  •     Alcohol and fireworks do not mix.
  •     Use fireworks outdoors only.
  •     Obey local laws. If fireworks are not legal where you live, do not use them.
  •     Always have a fire extinguisher and/or water handy.
  •     Only use fireworks as intended. Don’t try to alter them or combine them.
  •     Never re-light a firework.
  •     Spectators should keep a safe distance from the shooter.
  •     Do not use homemade fireworks or illegal explosives. They can kill you.
  •     Obey local laws, including a ban of fireworks due to drought.
  •     Safety glasses are recommended for the person lighting the fireworks.
  •     Follow all warning labels and read all precautionary information.
  •     Be cautious of lighting any fireworks during strong wind conditions.
  •      Always light fireworks with the prevailing wind blowing away from spectators.

And there’s more:

  •     Do not allow children to handle, play with, or light any fireworks
  •     Designate one person to light fireworks.
  •     Light only one firework item at a time.
  •     Never attempt to re-light, alter or fix any fireworks.
  •     Never pick up a firework that has failed to go off. If there is any question call your local fire department.
  •     Never smoke when handling fireworks.
  •     Never aim, point or throw fireworks at another person.
  •     Fireworks may only be used on the user's property or on the property of someone who has consented to the use of fireworks.
  •     Only individuals 18 years of age or older may legally purchase fireworks.

“Let’s face it. There are no safe ways for people to use fireworks themselves,” said Gary Kronen, M.D., a surgeon with MidAmerica Hand to Shoulder Clinic. “Hopefully, people will heed the safety advice and have a happy, safe and enjoyable Independence Day holiday,”

With clinics in Palos Hills, Mokena, Oakbrook Terrace, Schaumburg and Libertyville, MidAmerica Hand to Shoulder Clinic provides, with courtesy, respect, compassion, confidentiality and integrity, comprehensive hand and upper extremity care to patients.

For more information, visit: or call 708-237-7200 or 855-469-4263.

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Source: PRWeb
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