Local News

Fireworks Bring Risk With Their Allure

Posted July 2, 2007
Updated July 3, 2007

— State Insurance Commissioner Jim Long staged a demonstration Monday to prove how destructive fireworks can be.

Long does it every year, and he has a good reason: people keep getting hurt. Just last year in Wake County, the 911 center responded to 132 fireworks-related calls.

The products certainly can be attractive, packaged in bright colors and carrying names and slogans like “Fun with a bang,” TNT, Rock Music, Shark and Morning Glory.

Kids of all ages love them, but Long urges, “Remember that they can hurt.”

It can happen almost in the blink of an eye.

Long and members of the Raleigh Fire Department used a scarecrow in a pink flowery dress and legal fireworks to show how quickly one of the most patriotic holidays can become the most dangerous.

Safekids North Carolina recommends that children not handle them at all.

“If they are ones that lift off of the ground,we see injuries to their head or just their bodies,” Safekids’ Kelly Ransdell said. “But the thing is they are so hot, and they don't have the perception that they are dangerous, and so what happens is they get burned or injured so quickly.”

Long has three safety tips for fireworks:

  • Do not let kids play with them
  • Do not do it in the grass or in the woods because of the drought we're experiencing right now
  • Have a garden hose ready.

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  • mindlessfa99it Jul 3, 2007

    I like doing it in the grass... I duno about the woods that could hurt. lol.

  • jewel08 Jul 3, 2007

    people......just use common sense and care while using these things.....you can have fun and be careful...

  • Steve Crisp Jul 3, 2007

    OK...I'm trying to figure out how a Slinky can be dangerous... :)

  • strolling bones Jul 3, 2007

    My neighbor has been setting them off since Friday, 6/30 I go out in my drive way and have the leavings of rockets etc. They set them off in the rain by shooting them off the porch. July 4th is always big around here with several neighbors setting off fireworks with shows that rival commerical ones. Why complain? Get in the spirit of the holiday. I do not mind picking up empty rockets as long as the kids have a good and safe time...lighten up if the worse thing they do is shoot off fireworks count yourself lucky.

  • Michael Kenyon Jul 3, 2007

    "Nothing demonstrates the great freedoms we've earned as Americans than the ability to drink too much beer and then blow ourselves to smithereens with explosives while trying to celebrate that freedom."

    YeahBoy! Hey y'all, watch this!

  • The Fox Jul 3, 2007

    Two words: cherry bombs :D

  • SaveEnergyMan Jul 3, 2007

    Nothing demonstrates the great freedoms we've earned as Americans than the ability to drink too much beer and then blow ourselves to smithereens with explosives while trying to celebrate that freedom. We can only hope that Darwin will be kind and leave the innocent bystanders and children alone.

  • jailorjoe1978 Jul 3, 2007

    Ofcourse fireworks can be dangerous, as can pencils, glass beer bottles, bicycles slinkys etc. I just dont see the point in lecturing the community about it. we ALL know we should be careful, if we are not smart enough to know that gunpowder is a hazard.... then it may be best for the sake of humanity if you let us blow ourselves up. the world would be a better place.

  • banmewral Jul 3, 2007

    haha, police protection from fireworks. its like saying guns kill people... they are as safe as the people operatiing them, that said, i think sales should be a little more monitored. but banning explosive fireworks and only allowing sparklers is just adding more alure to those since they're illegal. if you get hurt handling/operating fireworks, it is your own fault and i'm sure they'll be happy to give you a darwin award at your funeral.

  • WTFmph Jul 3, 2007

    I can understand some Neanderthals' needs to detonate explosives on holidays where it is considered traditional. I can crank up my tolerance level temporarily, no problem.

    What I cannot understand is that when bad neighbors shoot bottle rockets onto my roof and otherwise terrorise me when the holiday is over, they are not prosecuted or sanctioned at all.

    This is in Cary, of all places. I am sure it would not be tolerated in McGregor Downs or Prestonwood, but for some reason, we in the less expensive neighborhoods have no protection from pcychopathic terrorists.

    And they wonder why, after all the decent hard-working, normal people move out, when left no other options, crime reigns.

    Even working class people deserve police protection.