Columbia burn surgeon offers firework safety advice

4 years 3 months 1 week ago Friday, July 03 2015 Jul 3, 2015 Friday, July 03, 2015 7:15:00 AM CDT July 03, 2015 in News
By: Alyssa Casares, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - With the Fourth of July weekend coming up, burn surgeons are offering people firework advice to help keep them safe this weekend.

The University Hospital's burn and wound program director Jeffrey Litt said the Fourth of July weekend is one of the busier parts of the burn surgeon's season.

"Most of the time people come in with smaller injuries, but they can be very severe injuries as well, even though they're small," Litt said. "From various mishaps with fireworks whether it's grabbing a sparkler or having a sparkler ignite a piece of clothing, or something exploding in someone's hand, an M-80, exploding in someone's hand because they felt that had enough time to light it and release it, and all the sudden they didn't. So it can be very serious."

Litt said although people might think sparklers are the safest option for young children, they are actually the second most frequent type of firework that cause injury.

"Part of the reason is because they get the hottest of all the different various forms of fireworks that one can purchase," Litt said. "They get up anywhere between 1,500 to 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit and that can cause a burn if you touch it directly in well less than a second, a full third-degree burn requiring surgery in less than a second."

Litt said more than 50 percent of burns are on people's hands, arms and faces.

"You can get burns anywhere and certainly someone can have their clothing ignited in which case it can really be anywhere," Litt said.

Depending on the strength of the firework, Litt said it is possible to lose a body part.

"You can easily blow a finger off or even part of your hand off," Litt said. "You can explode in your face and lose an eye. Lose parts of your face that we can't reattach unfortunately."

Litt said people should leave the handling of fireworks to the professionals.

"If you're going to want to see fireworks, there are plenty of great places here in town," Litt said. "And let the professionals that know how to handle pyrotechnics really put on the show and they assume whatever risk there is to assume."

He said if people are determine to set off their own fireworks, keep them away from children.

"Do not let children play with them, is number one," Litt said. "I would keep water handy, whether it's a bucket of water or light them near an accessible hose in case something wither catches on fire or doesn't react the way you expected it to, you could douse it fairly quickly."

He said never aim fireworks of any kind, or throw anything explosive near anyone. 

Litt said If something does go wrong, the first thing a person needs to do is calm down.

"It's a high tension situation and people panicking just makes that even worse," Dr. Litt said. 

He said if the person is still breathing or talking, "they're going to be fine. Call 911 for most things and get advice. They might send a crew or ask you to go to nearest hospital or urgent care center. But I don't want to meet anyone new this weekend as my patient."

 

More News

Grid
List
CAMDENTON — Camdenton City Clerk Renee Kingston didn't fall for a traffic violation scam. Kingston said she received two... More >>
5 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 7:50:00 PM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — A father was shot with his four children in his car while driving in south... More >>
5 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 7:36:00 PM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Board of Education will discuss modifications to the public comment section of its meetings Monday night.... More >>
7 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 5:13:00 PM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — The CEO of Dow Inc. has donated $6 million to a new University of Missouri health institute... More >>
12 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 12:49:00 PM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
CENTRALIA — The city of Centralia held its first monthly meeting on public safety Monday night since the firing of... More >>
13 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 11:51:00 AM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
KEYTESVILLE- A mid-Missouri father filed a wrongful death lawsuit Wednesday against the man accused of causing his disabled daughter's death... More >>
13 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 11:21:00 AM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A local group wants to expand the Jefferson City National Cemetery by relocating East Miller Park across... More >>
14 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 10:25:00 AM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
ROCHEPORT - The Columbia/ Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services is opening community-based pop up flu clinics... More >>
14 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 10:20:00 AM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Moms Demand Action is partnering with Stop the Bleed Coalition to hold crisis first aid training on... More >>
21 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 3:40:00 AM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Maries County sheriff's deputies said a drunk driver was to blame in a fatal car crash from early... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 8:46:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Drivers on I-70 westbound saw 2 mile long delays around mile marker 124 when the Missouri State Highway... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 4:18:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
ROCHEPORT - The Missouri Department of Natural Resources said the number of people using the Katy Trail is down by... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 3:08:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The CDC began monitoring the 2019-2020 flu season this weekend. And doctors are urging people to get their... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 2:55:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA — Six Columbia churches had their first Sunday service with improved emergency health precautions on Oct. 13. The... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 2:00:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
HARSTBURG – Celebrating another fall season with pumpkin carving, hayrides and a straw maze, the 28th annual Hartsburg Pumpkin Festival... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 8:00:00 AM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
TOKYO (AP) — A heavy downpour and strong winds pounded Tokyo and surrounding areas on Saturday as a powerful typhoon... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 8:03:00 PM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
LILBOURN, Mo. (AP) — A small earthquake has been reported in southeastern Missouri. The U.S. Geological Survey says... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 7:41:00 PM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — One person died after a crash in Cooper County Saturday morning. Haven Pennington, 19, drove her Pontiac... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 4:55:00 PM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 54°
2am 57°
3am 57°
4am 56°
5am 56°