PARMA, Ohio– The FOX 8 I TEAM has found new concerns over fireworks on the streets this Fourth of July holiday weekend.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission said injuries nationwide from fireworks accidents went up last year. And locally, the ground is so dry, there is an increased risk of fires starting from fireworks.
We saw that as the Southwest Enforcement Bureau Bomb Squad demonstrated the power of some fireworks you can get on the streets, and two small fires started as burning debris hit the ground.
The bomb squad showed us how quickly fireworks can blow off a hand or more.
In fact, weeks ago the Erie County Sheriff investigated a case of teens shooting off mortars from a moving car. A young man blew off part of his hand.
The Southwest Enforcement Bureau Bomb Squad includes police from Parma, Berea, Strongsville and a total of 19 towns.
Dave Kammerman from the bomb squad admits it gets frustrating talking about fireworks dangers year after year, but he said officers hope to, at least, reach a few people and convince them to leave the explosives to the pros.
The bomb squad showed us people make common mistakes, such as putting an explosive in a launcher upside down. Some users don’t realize two explosives may look identical, yet they may be made differently, meaning they have different amounts of powder inside or fuses that burn at different speeds.
On Friday, the Ohio State Fire Marshal’s Office and a non-profit group called Prevent Blindness will hold a news conference about the dangers of fireworks. Sherry Williams leads Prevent Blindness and she said nationally, more children are suffering from fireworks injuries.