You might have already heard the pops at night, or seen the colors, the time for fireworks has arrived.
Madison's Rhythm and Boom fireworks show is Wednesday, but many people are also putting together their own at home shows. Personal fireworks use can be a lot of fun, but it also holds a lot of danger.
According to the most recent statistics from the National Fire Protection Association, doctors treat more than 9,000 people for fireworks-related injuries in emergency rooms each year. One of every four people hurt, is under the age of 15 and 89 percent of those injuries are caused by legal consumer fireworks.
Along with burns, Dr. John Bonsett-Veal with the Wisconsin Optometric Association says eye injuries are among the most common. Contusions, lacerations and lodged foreign bodies happen to the eyes of fireworks users each year.
Topping the injury list is a family favorite, the sparkler, generally regarded by adults as safe.
Bonsett-Veal says while firework accidents can cause devastating results, most injuries can be avoided. He says you must keep in mind no private use of fireworks is completely without risk, so take the following precautions:
-provide adult supervision to older children using fireworks at all times
-tell children to leave the area if friends are using fireworks without supervision
-do not allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks
-don't shoot off fireworks in glass or metal containers, they can release shrapnel
-never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have ignited fully
-keep a bucket of water on hand in case of a malfunction or fire
If an accident happens, the Wisconsin Optometric Association says you can minimize damage by taking these steps:
-seek medical attention right away, even for mild injuries (mildly damaged areas can worsen and end in serious vision loss or blindness)
-shield the eye from pressure, tape or secure the bottom of a foam cup, milk carton or similar shield against the brow, cheek or bridge of the nose
-do NOT rub the eye or apply pressure
-do NOT attempt to rinse out the eye, this can cause more damage
-do NOT take aspirin to alleviate pain, in can increase bleeding