Columbia burn surgeon offers firework safety advice

3 years 3 months 2 weeks 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
COLUMBIA - Sen. Claire McCaskill spoke about health care in Columbia on Friday at Laborers Local 955, as part of... More >>
1 hour ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 7:35:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - After realizing the underrepresentation of Hispanic business owners in mid-Missouri, three Hispanic professionals established a group of 12... More >>
2 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 5:49:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - This is the last week of the regular season and it's a cold one. Our game of... More >>
3 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 5:20:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in Friday Night Fever
COLUMBIA - Two Midwest companies issued separate food recalls this week for bacterial contamination concerns. Hy-Vee said its supplier,... More >>
3 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 4:53:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
CAMDEN (AP) — Toxicology tests show that a boater was drunk when he slammed into a bluff at Missouri's Lake... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 3:41:35 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Legion of Black Collegians and the FourFront Marginalized Student Council held a solidarity walk Friday to show... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 3:39:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri State Medical Association (MSMA), along with multiple medical associations, reaffirmed their opposition to the three... More >>
5 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 2:50:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - For the fourth consecutive year, Project Homeless Connect provided services Friday for people who are experiencing homelessness... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 2:39:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Mega Millions jackpot has soared to an estimated $1 billion, as the second-largest lottery... More >>
8 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 12:10:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Police want the public's help finding a man who allegedly ran from a traffic stop after hurting... More >>
9 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 11:42:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Two MU residence halls and an atrium were officially dedicated on Friday honoring three former MU students. Lucile... More >>
10 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 10:09:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Just 1 in 4 people thinks Brett Kavanaugh was completely honest when as a Supreme Court nominee... More >>
10 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 9:58:13 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The US moved closer to acknowledging the role of Saudi Arabia in journalist Jamal Khashoggi's apparent death as... More >>
11 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 9:36:16 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
RANDOLPH COUNTY - MoDOT announced they will close Randolph County Route CC from Route FF to Route K on Monday,... More >>
12 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 8:30:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
FLORISSANT (AP) — Authorities have arrested a suburban St. Louis student after finding a loaded gun and a razor inside... More >>
12 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 7:46:15 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
ST. CHARLES, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri man has been sentenced to life in prison in the 1984 beating death... More >>
13 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 7:10:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Kansas City doctor has been sentenced to a year in federal prison for his... More >>
13 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 6:51:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS - Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill and Republican opponent Josh Hawley were sometimes heated and often derisive as they... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, October 18 2018 Oct 18, 2018 Thursday, October 18, 2018 9:02:00 PM CDT October 18, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 54°
9pm 55°
10pm 55°
11pm 55°
12am 54°