According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), 200 people on average visit the Emergency Room each day during the 4th of July holiday week. The majority of injuries occur to the hands, fingers, face, head and ears. Kids are most vulnerable to injuries. That’s why it’s best to leave the fireworks display to the experts.
Currently, there is a fire ban on open fires in Prowers County. In the county, fireworks are banned in unincorporated areas and the City of Lamar only allows certain types of fireworks, namely small cylindrical fountains no more than ¾ of an inch in diameter and with no more than 50 grams of pyrotechnic content. Sparklers, spinning wheels and glow worms are allowed but not recommended. For more details, contact the Lamar Fire Department at 719-336-4321.
“Every year, we see injuries on the 4th of July. Children need to be supervised at all times around any flame or heat source. We don’t always think about it, but children are easily burned by BBQ grills, fire pits, bon fires, tiki torches, and other heat sources. Whenever there is fire, be extra watchful,” said Dr. Margaret Loewen, Medical Director of the Emergency Department at Prowers Medical Center.
Besides fireworks, campfires are also a common cause for burns during the summer months. Campfires are the nation’s leading cause of children’s camping injuries, and the primary catalyst for damaging forest fires. If you are having a campfire, keep water nearby in case the wind kicks up the fire or someone is exposed. Before going camping, teach kids to stop, drop and roll. It’s important to clear the area of debris before building a campfire. Also, keep the fire small, don’t use lighter fluid, and make sure it’s fully extinguished before going to bed.
It’s also wise to establish rules for kids around campfires and fire pits, including always sitting when using marshmallow sticks, no waving of sticks as hot marshmallow can fling off and cause burns or sticks can poke eyes, and only adults can tend the fire. Also, avoid using bug spray around a campfire because it’s flammable.
Treating Minor Burns
The best treatment for a minor burn is to run cold tap water over the burn, or soak the burned hand or finger in water for 15 minutes. Doing so pulls the heat out of the skin.
“Avoid using ice as ice will cause more damage to the skin. Also, as tempting as it is, resist popping a burn blister as it increases the risk for infection,” Loewen said.
This year, play it safe. Forego the fireworks and take advantage of the fireworks display put on each year by Prowers County.
Prowers Medical Center Clinic Closed July 4
If injury occurs, seek medical treatment promptly. The Prowers Medical Center Clinic is closed on the 4th of July, but the emergency room at the hospital is always open.
4th of July Fireworks Display
Fireworks begin at dusk at Prowers County Fairgrounds. Bring a blanket, chairs, some glow sticks and enjoy a safe 4th of July with your family!