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Fireworks have become a traditional part of an American family's Fourth of July celebration. Unfortunately, these celebrations all too often result in serious burns, hearing loss and other injuries. Fireworks are illegal in Long Beach, and dangerous wherever they are ignited. Those are simple facts, yet every year people take needless risks when they celebrate the Fourth of July. Even so-called Safe and Sane fireworks and sparklers are harmful.
Here's a sobering look at the dangers of fireworks:
It’s amazing how many of these needless injuries could have been prevented.
- 20 Americans died in 2007 as a direct result of injuries caused by fireworks or related fires.
- Nearly 10,000 people each year are treated for injuries caused by fireworks.
- Half of all fireworks injuries happen to children under 15.
- Sparklers account for the most injuries (1,500), and for half the injuries to children under 5.
Yet the National Council on Fireworks Safety does have some promising news. For the past several years, there has been a decreasing trend in the fireworks injury rates. A major reason has been the increasing popularity of professional fireworks shows, which residents are encouraged to attend.
Every year, about 50 professional shows are held throughout Los Angeles County on the Fourth of July, including a show at Veterans Memorial Stadium another one visible from the Greater Queensway Bay and beachfront areas.
Check www.longbeach.gov or your local newspaper for more information, and leave fireworks shows to the professionals. They’re safe, and they’re amazing.
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