Branson EMTs advise fireworks safety

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BRANSON, Mo. (KSPR) - Many of you are probably hearing fireworks as we get ready to celebrate our country’s independence. But Emergency Medical Technicians at CoxHealth in Branson said they are seeing some people get hurt from not shooting them safely.

Emergency medical workers said they want you to be 10 to 20 feet from fireworks before you shoot them.

"It's just like a summer staple. Every Fourth of July that's something that I always remember growing up: watching fireworks with my family or at church," said Dalton Lane, who likes fireworks. “Big fan of fireworks. Big fireworks guy.”

Dalton Lane holds these truths to be self-evident: he will celebrate Independence Day and be smart about it.

"I like to air on the safe side of things. Mom raised me well. She always taught me don't be stupid, so I’m not going to be stupid. Mama said," Lane said.

That is something CoxHealth EMT, Kyle Todd, is relieved to hear.
"When you take a firework and modify it, you are possibly creating a very dangerous weapon. You don't want to do that," said Todd.

He said already fireworks injuries are sending some people to the emergency room.

"The explosive nature of the firework causes damage to the soft tissue and the bones in the hand if it's severe," Todd said.

Kyle Todd said some people are lightening fireworks in their hands. That does not make sense to Lane.

"That's crazy. I don't understand that. A very high risk, low reward with that firework," Lane said. "You don't want to blow your hand off."

You can also be careful by checking your fireworks' expiration date.

"Some folks will keep fireworks for years and, just like other explosive devices, those can become more powerful over time," Todd said.

However you celebrate our country's freedom, Lane wants you to stay safe.

"Common sense. Even some adults need supervised. Just usually the ones in the ER," Lane said.

Todd said you can also stay safe by not shooting bottle rockets at each other, making sure you have enough space to shoot fireworks, and buying your fireworks from a reputable company.