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State Fire Marshal's Office reports 354 injuries last year from fireworks

The State Fire Marshal
The State Fire Marshal's Office reminds people about the dangers of fireworks if used improperly.
— image credit: Kent Reporter, file photo

A total of 354 fireworks-related injuries and fires reported to the State Fire Marshal’s Office in 2012 by fire departments and hospitals.

Of the 354 reports received, there were 128 fires and 226 injuries, according to a media release from the State Fire Marshal's Office to warn people about the dangers of fireworks as the Fourth of July nears.

The majority of these incidents occurred on July 4 and most were caused by males between ages 8 and 21.

The major incidents included:

• 7 residential fires totaling $880,500 in loss, 1 was caused by an illegal device, 3 were caused by legal fireworks and 3 were caused by an unknown type of firework device.

• 26 fires and 64 injuries were caused by devices which are illegal to own or possess in Washington State.

• 7 sparkler bomb incidents that included 5 fires/explosions and 2 causing facial, torso and hand injuries. These devices are considered improvised explosive devices which are illegal to manufacture and possess.

Parents Need to Know: Supervision of kids 14 and under is critical in reducing emergency responses to fireworks incidents. Talk to your kids about fireworks and safety. Set family boundaries, only adults should light fireworks. Store fireworks in a secure location out of the reach and sight of curious children.

Remember the three B’s of fireworks safety:

Be Prepared—Have water nearby and put pets indoors; Be Safe—Only adults should light fireworks, and Be Responsible—clean up fireworks debris.

For more information about fireworks safety, public fireworks displays and the fireworks laws for your area, check the Celebrate Safely website at http://www.wsp.wa.gov/fire/fireworks.htm.

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