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6 Common Fireworks-Related Injuries

Surefire Ways to Avoid Fireworks Injuries Independence Day means celebrations and picnics. It also means injuries from fireworks. Small fireworks and sparklers cause most of these injuries. A sparkler is not a child’s toy. Sparklers burn at temperatures that can melt metal. The best way to prevent injuries is to leave fireworks to the professionals. Watch from a safe distance. Be aware of these six common fireworks injuries, and what to do in case of an accident.

Firecracker Being Lit

Hand Burns

A burned hand or finger is the most common injury from fireworks. A minor burn causes redness and pain. More serious burns cause blisters. The most serious burns cause white leathery skin and damage under the skin. Don’t let children use fireworks. Never pick up a firework that has not gone off. If you do light fireworks, keep water close by in case of fire. Minor burns can be treated by cleaning and over-the-counter pain medicine. All other burns need emergency treatment.

Eye Injuries

Eye injuries from fireworks can range from minor burns to complete loss of vision. An exploding firework sends dangerous particles flying through the air. They can pierce an eyeball. You can get an eye injury by standing too close. Wear protective eyewear if you are handling fireworks. Better yet, go to a fireworks show instead of doing fireworks at home. Stand at least 500 feet away. There is no first aid for a fireworks eye injury. Leave the eye alone and get emergency medical treatment.

Hand Fractures and Lacerations

Besides burns, fireworks can cause severe hand injuries. These include deep cuts, torn tendons, and broken bones. Severe hand injuries require emergency treatment. Before emergency help arrives, a little first aid may help. Take off any jewelry, cover the hand with a clean cloth, put an ice pack on it, and keep the hand raised.

Facial Injuries

Powerful fireworks can cause serious injuries to the face. Besides harming the eyes, fireworks can burn the face. Severe injuries to the face can also include broken bones and loss of facial tissue. To keep from getting hurt, don’t use any type of powerful firework. Never light a fuse with your head bent over the firework. If you do get injured, keep your head at a level above your heart. Put a clean cloth over the injury. Apply an ice pack. Get emergency care as soon as possible.

Loss of Finger

Many severe hand injuries from fireworks cause loss of a finger or thumb. First aid includes cleaning, covering with a clean cloth, applying ice, and keeping the hand raised until you get emergency care. If part of a lost finger can be found, clean it with a saltwater solution. Then wrap it in gauze, put it in a watertight bag and place the bag on ice. Take the finger with you to the emergency room.

Hearing Loss

Very loud noise from fireworks can cause hearing loss. This could be temporary or permanent. Noise is measured in decibels. Noise louder than 85 decibels can cause damage to hearing. A firework going off three feet away can be 150 decibels. Besides loss of hearing, symptoms can include ear pain and ringing in the ears. Stay at least 500 feet from fireworks to prevent hearing loss. First aid includes covering the ears and getting away from the noise. Then make an appointment for an ear and hearing check with your doctor.

Dangers of Dehydration

Water is vital to human life—so much so that we can’t go more than a few days without it. About 60% of your body is made up of water. On average, men need to drink about 3 liters—more than three-quarters of a gallon—of fluids every day to stay fully hydrated. Women need about 2.2 liters—more than half a gallon—of fluids a day. (The water in foods also counts toward that total fluid intake.) When your body gets less water than it needs, you may start noticing early dehydration effects, such as dry mouth, extreme thirst, infrequent urination, or dark urine. With severe dehydration, however, the symptoms can become dangerous and even life threatening.

Why Your Body Needs Water

Water serves many purposes in the body, and without enough fluids, your body can’t function correctly. Among the many things water does in the body:


  • Regulates body temperature through sweating
  • Provides fluid to blood and lymphatic vessels
  • Removes waste
  • Transports nutrients to every cell through the bloodstream
  • Cushions the brain and spinal cord and lubricates joints
  • Creates saliva

Complications of Dehydration

Without water, many problems—sometimes extremely serious ones—can develop in the body. Mild dehydration can typically be treated just by drinking more water, but moderate and severe dehydration aren’t so easily treated and can pose a danger to your health. Severe dehydration is a life-threatening emergency and requires  immediate treatment by a medical professional. The most serious dangers of dehydration include:

  • Hypovolemic shock: This condition is also known as low blood volume shock. The link between dehydration and blood pressure can be a life-threatening situation. If you become dehydrated, your blood volume can plunge, which can cause a drop in blood pressure and too little oxygen in the blood. Your heart won’t be able to pump enough blood, which can cause your organs to fail. Treating hypovolemic shock is an emergency and requires an intravenous (IV) line to restore fluids and administer medication.
  • Kidney problems: Dehydration can cause waste to build up in the body because there isn’t enough water to deliver the waste to the kidneys. This also can cause muscle proteins to clog the kidneys, which can lead to kidney stones and urinary tract infections. Frequent or chronic dehydration symptoms can lead to permanent kidney damage.
  • Seizures: Dehydration from vomiting, diarrhea, or excessive sweating causes an imbalance of the electrolytes in the body. This electrolyte imbalance can affect the brain’s function and metabolism, which can lead to seizures.
  • Heat illnesses: Without drinking enough water on a hot day or while doing strenuous exercise, the extra sweating can dehydrate you. You also could suffer heat injuries, such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion or heatstroke. When you’re dehydrated, you may become unable to sweat enough to lower your body temperature, and your body overheats. Heatstroke can happen quickly and is a life-threatening emergency.

How to Recognize and Prevent Dehydration

If you’ve been experiencing diarrhea or vomiting, you have a high risk of becoming dehydrated. Not drinking enough water on a hot day or while exercising, or even just a high fever, can cause dehydration. Young children and elderly people are most likely to experience dehydration. It’s especially important to watch for symptoms of dehydration in babies because they can’t tell you they’re thirsty. Symptoms of dehydration in babies include:

  • No tears when crying
  • Sunken soft spot on the head
  • Sunken eyes
  • No wet diapers in three or more hours

To prevent dehydration, make sure babies are drinking enough breast milk or other fluids, especially if they have diarrhea. In general, infants up to 6 months old getting adequate fluids should gain 5 to 7 ounces a week and infants 6 to 12 months about 4 ounces a week. Although infant weight gain is variable, weight loss or no weight gain may be a sign of dehydration and requires prompt medical evaluation.

In adults, good prevention methods include making sure other health conditions, such as diabetes, are under control and eating foods with high water content, like fruits and veggies. And everyone should be drinking plenty of fluids when out in hot weather and when exercising.


Minneapolis MN personal injury lawyers

The Schmidt Salita Law Team Handles a Wide Variety of Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Claims.

The Schmidt Salita Law Team handles cases involving car accidents, trucking accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrian car accidents, and bicycle accidents.  It has many years’ experience in workers compensation , products liability and medical malpractice cases.

The Schmidt Salita Law Team has extensive experience with concussion injuries, traumatic brain injuries, neck and back injuries, whiplash injuries, broken bones, injured joint injuries (knee, hip, shoulder, wrist, ankle, spinal), amputation injuries, and vision and eye injuries.

The Schmidt Salita Law Team has offices through out the State of Minnesota.  Its primary location is at Ridgedale Office Center in Minnetonka, near the intersection of I394 and I494.  The offices are handicap accessible with ample parking.

The Schmidt Salita Team Offers Contingent Fee Arrangements.

The firm offers contingent fee agreements (You don’t pay lawyers fees until you collect and then only as a percentage of the settlement).  It also offers home and hospital visits to clients whose injuries present difficulty in coming to the office.


The Schmidt Salita Law Team has locations throughout the Twin Cities metropolitan area of Minneapolis and St. Paul, as well as Minnetonka, Maple Grove, Plymouth, Osseo, Anoka, Coon Rapids, Brooklyn Center, Fridley, Blaine, Shoreview, Woodbury, Falcon Heights, Columbia Park, Stillwater, Hastings, Inver Grove, Cottage Grove, South St. Paul, Apple Valley, Eagan, Burnsville, Savage, Shakopee, Richfield, Bloomington, Chaska, Chanhassen, Edina, Eden Prairie, and Hopkins.